A comparison of characteristic times for satellite absorption of energetic protons trapped in the Jovian and Saturnian magnetic fields

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4 Scopus citations

Abstract

The relative symmetry of the Saturnian magnetic field with respect to the rotational equatorial plane results in characteristic times for satellite absorption of trapped energetic protons that are typically one to three orders of magnitude smaller than the corresponding Jovian satellite absorption times. The maximum difference occurs for nearly equatorially mirroring particles. Assuming that the rates of radial diffusion are comparable within the two magnetospheres, the inner Saturnian satellites are more efficient absorbers of inwardly diffusing ions than their Jovian counterparts. Thus, via the mechanism of satellite absorption, the rotational symmetry of the planetary magnetic field may play an important indirect role in determining gross properties of the radiation environment at Saturn.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)976-979
Number of pages4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume8
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1981

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences

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