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Paper: Surprises from Saturn: Implications for Other Environments
Volume: 484, Outstanding Problems in Heliophysics: From Coronal Heating to the Edge of the Heliosphere
Page: 16
Authors: Coates, A. J.
Abstract: The exploration of Saturn by Cassini has provided many surprises regarding: Saturn's rapidly rotating magnetosphere, interactions with its diverse moons, and interactions with the solar wind. Enceladus, orbiting at 4 Saturn radii (RS), was found to have plumes of water vapour and ice which are the dominant source for the inner magnetosphere. Charged water clusters, charged dust and photoelectrons provide key populations in the 'dusty plasma' observed. Direct pickup is seen near Enceladus and field-aligned currents create a spot in Saturn's aurora. At Titan, orbiting at 20 RS, unexpected heavy negative and positive ions are seen in the ionosphere, which provide the source for Titan's haze. Ionospheric plasma is seen in Titan's tail, enabling ion escape to be estimated at 7 tonnes per day. Saturn's ring ionosphere was seen early in the mission and a return will be made in 2017. In addition, highly accelerated electrons are seen at Saturn's high Mach number (MA100) quasi-parallel bow shock. Here we review some of these key new results, and discuss the implications for other solar system objects.
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