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Voyager Results Revisited. By Ed Sittler NASA/GSFC CAPS Team Meeting #28 Marseille, France July 26-28, 2004. Voyager Encounter Geometry. Saturn Encounter Trajectories. Saturn’s Magnetospheric Plasma. Voyager 1 Plasma Electrons. Voyager 2 Plasma Electrons. Voyager 1 Electron Spectrum.

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voyager results revisited

Voyager Results Revisited


Ed Sittler


CAPS Team Meeting #28

Marseille, France

July 26-28, 2004

enrichment of nitrogen ion s within saturn s inner magnetosphere
Enrichment of Nitrogen Ion’s within Saturn’s Inner Magnetosphere?
  • Solar wind source of keV protons and alphas
  • Titan Torus as source of keV Nitrogen Ions
  • Ions energized as they diffuse inward to form radiation belts within inner magnetosphere.
    • Radial diffusion and Convection
  • Charged particle sinks
    • Wave scattering by MHD waves
    • Satellite sweeping
    • Loss due to dust particles
    • Charge exchange losses with neutral clouds
  • Voyager plasma data showed presence of light ion component (H+) and heavy ion component (N+,O+,W+). Did not see evidence of H2+.
  • Data consistent with heavy ions dominating near equator and light ions dominating at high latitudes.
  • Electron observations show plasma sheet within inner magnetosphere inside L ~ 15 and time dependent region in outer magnetosphere.
  • Electron data shows keV electrons confined near equatorial plane (T/Tll >> 1). Same is true for energetic electrons (LECP).
  • Expect energetic heavy ions to be confined to equatorial plane, while protons more isotropic and at all latitudes (LECP).
  • PLS observed hot keV ion component (N+/O+) confined to equatorial plane in Titan torus region (T/Tll >> 1). Hot keV ion component (N+, O+, W+) also observed at Dione’s L shell ring plane crossing.
  • Ions typically sub-corotate in outer magnetosphere at ~ 50% of co-rotation. Ionospheric pederson height conductivity ~ 0.2 mho.
  • Saturn’s magnetosphere falls in the category of a fast rotator where neutral clouds can dominate the plasma environment by number.