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A combined model of pressure variations in Titan's plasma environment

Achilleos, N; Arridge, CS; Bertucci, C; Guio, P; Romanelli, N; Sergis, N; (2014) A combined model of pressure variations in Titan's plasma environment. GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS , 41 (24) pp. 8730-8735. 10.1002/2014GL061747. Green open access

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Abstract

In order to analyze varying plasma conditions upstream of Titan, we have combined a physical model of Saturn's plasma disk with a geometrical model of the oscillating current sheet. During modeled oscillation phases where Titan is farthest from the current sheet, the main sources of plasma pressure in the near-Titan space are the magnetic pressure and, for disturbed conditions, the hot plasma pressure. When Titan is at the center of the sheet, the main sources are the dynamic pressure associated with Saturn's cold, subcorotating plasma and the hot plasma pressure under disturbed conditions. Total pressure at Titan (dynamic plus thermal plus magnetic) typically increases by a factor of up to about 3 as the current sheet center is approached. The predicted incident plasma flow direction deviates from the orbital plane of Titan by ≲10°. These results suggest a correlation between the location of magnetic pressure maxima and the oscillation phase of the plasma sheet. Our model may be used to predict near-Titan conditions from “far-field” in situ measurements.

Type: Article
Title: A combined model of pressure variations in Titan's plasma environment
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1002/2014GL061747
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/2014GL061747
Additional information: ©2014. The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Titan, Saturn, magnetosphere, plasma sheet
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Physics and Astronomy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1461209
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