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Spectral morphology of the X-ray emission from Jupiter's aurorae

Branduardi-Raymont, G; Elsner, RF; Galand, M; Grodent, D; Cravens, TE; Ford, P; Gladstone, GR; (2008) Spectral morphology of the X-ray emission from Jupiter's aurorae. J GEOPHYS RES-SPACE , 113 (A2) , Article A02202. 10.1029/2007JA012600.

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Simultaneous Chandra X-ray and Hubble Space Telescope FUV observations of Jupiter's aurorae carried out in February 2003 have been re-examined to investigate the spatial morphology of the X-ray events in different energy bands. The data clearly show that in the Northern auroral region (in the main auroral oval and the polar cap) events with energy > 2 keV are located at the periphery of those with energy < 2 keV and coincide with FUV bright features. In addition, X-ray spectra extracted from the areas where the two event distributions are concentrated possess different shapes. We associate the > 2 keV events (similar to 45 MW emitted power) with the electron bremsstrahlung component recently revealed by XMM-Newton in the spectra of Jupiter's aurorae, and the < 2 keV emission (similar to 230 MW) with the product of ion charge exchange, now established as the likely mechanism responsible for the soft X-ray Jovian aurora. We suggest that the same population of energetic electrons may be responsible for both, the X-ray bremsstrahlung and the FUV emission of Jupiter's aurorae. Comparison of the > 2 keV X-ray and FUV (340 GW) powers measured during the observations shows that they are broadly consistent with the predicted emissions from a population of energetic electrons precipitating in the planet's atmosphere, thus supporting our interpretation.

Type: Article
Title: Spectral morphology of the X-ray emission from Jupiter's aurorae
DOI: 10.1029/2007JA012600
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/111860
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