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In Situ Electron Density From Active Sounding: The Influence of the Spacecraft Wake
Univ Colorado, Lab Atmospher & Space Phys, Boulder, CO 80309 USA.
Univ Colorado, Lab Atmospher & Space Phys, Boulder, CO 80309 USA.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Swedish Institute of Space Physics, Uppsala Division.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7933-0322
Univ Colorado, Lab Atmospher & Space Phys, Boulder, CO 80309 USA.
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2019 (English)In: Geophysical Research Letters, ISSN 0094-8276, E-ISSN 1944-8007, Vol. 46, no 17-18, p. 10250-10256Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Results obtained in the Martian ionosphere by the Langmuir Probe and Waves instrument aboard the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN Mission spacecraft are presented. The results include ionospheric electron densities determined from the frequency of Langmuir waves. Since the amplitude of thermal Langmuir waves is often below the instrument's detection level, Langmuir Probe and Waves excites these waves by injecting into the plasma a 3.3-V white noise signal. Electric field spectral measurements obtained shortly after the excitation show a resonance line at frequencies slightly below the local plasma frequency. The observed resonance line is interpreted to originate from plasma waves excited in the wake behind the spacecraft. These results reveal an important phenomenon in electron density estimation from stimulated Langmuir waves. The observed phenomenon, not previously reported by earlier missions, may be a common process in active sounding that can affect in situ electron density measurements.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
AMER GEOPHYSICAL UNION , 2019. Vol. 46, no 17-18, p. 10250-10256
Keywords [en]
Langmuir probe, in situ electron density, relaxation sounding, Martian ionosphere, satellite wake
National Category
Fusion, Plasma and Space Physics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-408848DOI: 10.1029/2019GL084121ISI: 000485376800001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-408848DiVA, id: diva2:1423728
Available from: 2020-04-15 Created: 2020-04-15 Last updated: 2020-04-15Bibliographically approved

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Andrews, David J.

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