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Title: A statistical survey of ultralow-frequency wave power and polarization in the Hermean magnetosphere
Authors: James, Matthew K.
Bunce, Emma J.
Yeoman, Timothy K.
Imber, Suzanne M.
Korth, H.
First Published: 28-Sep-2016
Publisher: American Geophysical Union (AGU), Wiley
Citation: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics , 2016 121, 8755–8772
Abstract: We present a statistical survey of ultralow-frequency wave activity within the Hermean magnetosphere using the entire MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging magnetometer data set. This study is focused upon wave activity with frequencies <0.5 Hz, typically below local ion gyrofrequencies, in order to determine if field line resonances similar to those observed in the terrestrial magnetosphere may be present. Wave activity is mapped to the magnetic equatorial plane of the magnetosphere and to magnetic latitude and local times on Mercury using the KT14 magnetic field model. Wave power mapped to the planetary surface indicates the average location of the polar cap boundary. Compressional wave power is dominant throughout most of the magnetosphere, while azimuthal wave power close to the dayside magnetopause provides evidence that interactions between the magnetosheath and the magnetopause such as the Kelvin-Helmholtz instability may be driving wave activity. Further evidence of this is found in the average wave polarization: left-handed polarized waves dominate the dawnside magnetosphere, while right-handed polarized waves dominate the duskside. A possible field line resonance event is also presented, where a time-of-flight calculation is used to provide an estimated local plasma mass density of ∼240 amu cm-3.
DOI Link: 10.1002/2016JA023103
ISSN: 2169-9380
eISSN: 2169-9402
Version: Publisher Version
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: ©2016. The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Description: The data used in this study are available from the Planetary Data Center.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Physics and Astronomy

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