Planetary Sciences Editors' Highlights

New Energetic Neutral Atom Emissions from Jupiter, Io, and Europa

The first Jovian off-equator Energetic Neutral Atom viewings reveal distinct emissions from Jupiter and the orbits of Io and Europa: Energetic particle injections surprisingly occur inside Io’s orbit.

Source: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics


The Juno spacecraft is currently in orbit around Jupiter. Onboard is the Jupiter Energetic particle Detector Instrument (JEDI), which was designed to measure energy, angular, and compositional distributions of electrons and ions.

Mauk et al. [2020] use measurements from JEDI to present the very first energetic neutral atom (ENA) observations off Jupiter’s equator and link them to the planet’s dynamic magnetospheric processes. This is a novel look at the Jovian system, and provides an exciting new line of data analysis for the Juno/JEDI dataset in a way it was not designed for.

The authors offer a new remote sensing approach for monitoring Jupiter’s magnetosphere with Juno. The anticipated synergy of this ENA monitoring capability with the mission’s in-situ charged particle measurements and other remote sensing methods (Juno UVS/JIRAM: aurora, MWR: Synchrotron belts) would greatly enhance the scientific output of the mission. It clearly shows that there is also much to anticipate from the dedicated ENA observations of the JUICE mission.

Citation: Mauk, B. H., Clark, G., Allegrini, F., Bagenal, F., Bolton, S. J., Connerney, J. E. P., et al [2020]. Juno energetic neutral atom (ENA) remote measurements of magnetospheric injection dynamics in Jupiter’s Io torus regions. Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, 125, e2020JA027964.

—Viviane Pierrard, Editor, JGR: Space Physics

Text © 2020. The authors. CC BY-NC-ND 3.0
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