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Dust-plasma interaction through magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling in Saturn’s plasma disk
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Space Plasma Physics.
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2012 (English)In: European Planetary Science Congress 2012, held 23-28 September, 2012 in Madrid, Spain. http://meetings.copernicus.org/epsc2012, id. EPSC2012-433, 2012Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The ion bulk speeds in the equatorial region of Saturn’s inner magnetosphere, according to data from the Langmuir Probe (LP) on board the Cassini spacecraft, are about 60% of the ideal co-rotation speed. These findings suggest that sub-micrometer negatively charged E ring dust contributes to the plasma dynamics in the plasma disk. We calculated the ion speeds by using multicomponent MHD equations, taking into account dust interactions to investigate the effects of ion-dust coulomb collision, mass loading, as well as taking into account magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling to investigate the effect of the magnetospheric electric field. The results show that the ion speeds can be significantly reduced by the electric fields generated by the ion-dust collisions when the dust density is high and the thickness of dust distribution is large. We also show that the ion speeds from our model are consistent with the LP observations when the maximum density of dust is larger than ~10\^5 m\^-3.

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Fusion, Plasma and Space Physics
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-196706OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-196706DiVA: diva2:610824
European Planetary Science Congress 2012
Available from: 2013-03-13 Created: 2013-03-13 Last updated: 2013-03-13

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