Radio occultations of the Io plasma tours by Juno are feasible

Status Report From: e-Print archive
Posted: Friday, January 27, 2017

Phillip H. Phipps, Paul Withers
(Submitted on 25 Jan 2017)

The flow of material from Io's volcanoes into the Io plasma torus, out into the magnetosphere, and along field lines into Jupiter's upper atmosphere is not adequately understood. The lack of observations of spatial and temporal variations in the Io plasma torus impedes attempts to understand the system as a whole. Here we propose that radio occultations of the Io plasma torus by the Juno spacecraft can measure plasma densities in the Io plasma torus. We find that the line-of-sight column density of plasma in each of the three regions of the Io plasma torus (cold torus, ribbon, and warm torus) can be measured with uncertainties of 10%. We also find that scale heights describing the spatial variation in plasma density in each of these three regions can be measured with similar uncertainties. Such observations will be sufficiently accurate to support system-scale studies of the flow of plasma through the magnetosphere of Jupiter.

Comments:    53 pages (unformatted manuscript), 10 figures, 3 tables, accepted for publication in JGR Space Physics
Subjects:    Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Space Physics (
Cite as:    arXiv:1701.07435 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:1701.07435v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Phillip Phipps
[v1] Wed, 25 Jan 2017 19:00:00 GMT (1610kb)

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