On magnetospheric electron impact ionisation and dynamics in Titan's ram-side and polar ionosphere – A Cassini case study

K. Agren, J. E. Wahlund, R. Modolo, D. Lummerzheim, M. Galand, I. Müller-Wodarg, P. Canu, W. S. Kurth, T. E. Cravens, R. V. Yelle, J. H. Waite, A. J. Coates, G. R. Lewis, D. T. Young, C. Bertucci, M. K. Dougherty

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Abstract

We present data from the sixth Cassini flyby of Titan (T5), showing that the magnetosphere of Saturn strongly interacts with the moon's ionosphere and exo-ionosphere. A simple electron ionisation model provides a reasonable agreement with the altitude structure of the ionosphere. Furthermore, we suggest that the dense and cold exo-ionosphere (from the exobase at 1430 km and outward to several Titan radii from the surface) can be explained by magnetospheric forcing and other transport processes whereas exospheric ionisation by impacting low energy electrons seems to play a minor role.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2359-2369
Number of pages11
JournalAnnales Geophysicae
Volume25
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Geology
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Agren, K., Wahlund, J. E., Modolo, R., Lummerzheim, D., Galand, M., Müller-Wodarg, I., Canu, P., Kurth, W. S., Cravens, T. E., Yelle, R. V., Waite, J. H., Coates, A. J., Lewis, G. R., Young, D. T., Bertucci, C., & Dougherty, M. K. (2007). On magnetospheric electron impact ionisation and dynamics in Titan's ram-side and polar ionosphere – A Cassini case study. Annales Geophysicae, 25(11), 2359-2369. https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-25-2359-2007