Planetary period magnetic field oscillations in Saturn's magnetosphere: Postequinox abrupt nonmonotonic transitions to northern system dominance
2013 (English)In: Journal of Geophysical Research-Space Physics, ISSN 2169-9380, Vol. 118, no 6, 3243-3264 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
We examine the planetary period magnetic field oscillations observed in the core region of Saturn's magnetosphere (dipole L12), on 56 near-equatorial Cassini periapsis passes that took place between vernal equinox in August 2009 and November 2012. Previous studies have shown that these consist of the sum of two oscillations related to the northern and southern polar regions having differing amplitudes and periods that had reached near-equal amplitudes and near-converged periods 10.68 h in the interval to 1 year after equinox. The present analysis shows that an interval of strongly differing behavior then began 1.5 years after equinox, in which abrupt changes in properties took place at 6- to 8-month intervals, with three clear transitions occurring in February 2011, August 2011, and April 2012, respectively. These are characterized by large simultaneous changes in the amplitudes of the two systems, together with small changes in period about otherwise near-constant values of 10.63 h for the northern system and 10.69 h for the southern (thus, not reversed postequinox) and on occasion jumps in phase. The first transition produced a resumption of strong southern system dominance unexpected under northern spring conditions, while the second introduced comparably strong northern system dominance for the first time in these data. The third resulted in suppression of all core oscillations followed by re-emergence of both systems on a time scale of 85 days, with the northern system remaining dominant but not as strongly as before. This behavior poses interesting questions for presently proposed theoretical scenarios.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 118, no 6, 3243-3264 p.
Saturn, Planetary period oscillations, SKR, Cassini
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-210310DOI: 10.1002/jgra.50186ISI: 000325217100047OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-210310DiVA: diva2:662018