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Conductivities of Titan's Dusty Ionosphere

  • Shebanits, Oleg
  • Wahlund, Jan-Erik
  • Waite, J. H.
  • Dougherty, M. K.
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2022
DOI: 10.1029/2021JA029910
DiVA - Academic Archive On-line
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Titan's ionosphere hosts a globally distributed non-trivial dusty ion-ion plasma, providing an environment for studies of dusty ionospheres that is in many aspects unique in our solar system. Thanks to the Cassini mission, Titan's ionosphere also features one of the largest dusty plasma data sets from 126 flybys of the moon over 13 years, from 2004 to 2017. Recent studies have shown that negatively charged dust dramatically alters the electric properties of plasmas, in particular planetary ionospheres. Utilizing the full plasma content of the moon's ionosphere (electrons, positive ions, and negative ions/dust grains), we derive the electric conductivities and define the conductive dynamo region. Our results show that using the full plasma content increases the Pedersen conductivities at similar to 1,100-1,200 km altitude by up to 35% compared to the estimates using only electron densities. The Hall conductivities are in general not affected but several cases indicate a reverse Hall effect at similar to 900 km altitude (closest approach) and below. The dayside conductivities are shown to be factor similar to 7-9 larger than on the nightside, owing to higher dayside plasma densities.

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