Corotating Magnetic Reconnection Site in Saturn's Magnetosphere

Yao, Z. H. and Coates, A. J. and Ray, L. C. and Rae, I. J. and Grodent, D. and Jones, Geraint H. and Dougherty, M. K. and Owen, C. J. and Guo, R. L. and Dunn, W. R. and Radioti, A. and Pu, Z. Y. and Lewis, G. R. and Waite, J. H. and Gerard, J. -C. (2017) Corotating Magnetic Reconnection Site in Saturn's Magnetosphere. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 846 (2). ISSN 2041-8205

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Abstract

Using measurements from the Cassini spacecraft in Saturn's magnetosphere, we propose a 3D physical picture of a corotating reconnection site, which can only be driven by an internally generated source. Our results demonstrate that the corotating magnetic reconnection can drive an expansion of the current sheet in Saturn's magnetosphere and, consequently, can produce Fermi acceleration of electrons. This reconnection site lasted for longer than one of Saturn's rotation period. The long-lasting and corotating natures of the magnetic reconnection site at Saturn suggest fundamentally different roles of magnetic reconnection in driving magnetospheric dynamics (e.g., the auroral precipitation) from the Earth. Our corotating reconnection picture could also potentially shed light on the fast rotating magnetized plasma environments in the solar system and beyond.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Astrophysical Journal Letters
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/3100/3103
Subjects:
ID Code:
88669
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
13 Nov 2017 12:16
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
16 Sep 2020 04:06