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CO+ first-negative band emission: A tracer for CO in the Martian upper atmosphere

By SpaceRef Editor
May 20, 2020
Filed under , , ,

Susarla Raghuram, Anil Bhardwaj

Recently, Imaging Ultraviolet Spectrograph (IUVS) on-board Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) satellite observed CO+ first-negative band limb emission in the Martian upper atmosphere. We aim to explore the photochemical processes in the Martian upper atmosphere, which drives this band emission. A photochemical model is developed to study the excitation processes of CO+ first-negative band emission (B2Σ+→ X2Σ+) in the upper atmosphere of Mars. The number density profiles of CO2 and CO from two different models, viz., Mars Climate Database (MCD) and Mars Global Ionosphere-Thermosphere (MGIT) are used to determining the limb intensity of this band emission. On increasing the CO density by a factor of 4 and 8 in MCD and MGIT models, respectively, the modelled CO+ first-negative band limb intensity profile is found to be consistent with IUVS/MAVEN observation. In this case, the intensity of this band emission is significantly determined by the ionization of CO by solar photons and photoelectrons, and the role of dissociative ionization of CO2 is negligible. Since CO is the major source of the CO+(B2Σ+), we suggest that the observed CO+ first-negative band emission intensity can be used to retrieve the CO density in the Martian upper atmosphere for the altitudes above 150 km.

Comments: 7 pages and 5 figures

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Space Physics (

Cite as: arXiv:2005.09473 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2005.09473v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)

Submission history

From: Susarla Raghuram 

[v1] Tue, 19 May 2020 14:19:16 UTC (116 KB)

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