In situ observations connected to the io footprint tail aurora

J. R. Szalay, B. Bonfond, F. Allegrini, F. Bagenal, S. Bolton, G. Clark, J. E.P. Connerney, R. W. Ebert, R. E. Ergun, G. R. Gladstone, D. Grodent, G. B. Hospodarsky, V. Hue, W. S. Kurth, S. Kotsiaros, S. M. Levin, P. Louarn, B. Mauk, D. J. McComas, J. SaurP. W. Valek, R. J. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


The Juno spacecraft crossed flux tubes connected to the Io footprint tail at low Jovian altitudes on multiple occasions. The transits covered longitudinal separations of approximately 10° to 120° along the footprint tail. Juno’s suite of magnetospheric instruments acquired detailed measurements of the Io footprint tail. Juno observed planetward electron energy fluxes of ~70 mW/m 2 near the Io footprint and ~10 mW/m 2 farther down the tail, along with correlated, intense electric and magnetic wave signatures, which also decreased down the tail. All observed electron distributions were broad in energy, suggesting a dominantly broadband acceleration process, and did not show any broad inverted-V structure that would be indicative of acceleration by a quasi-static, discrete, parallel potential. Observed waves were primarily below the proton cyclotron frequency, yet identification of a definitive wave mode is elusive. Beyond 40° down the footprint tail, Juno observed depleted upward loss cones, suggesting that the broadband acceleration occurred at distances beyond Juno’s transit distance of 1.3 to 1.7 R J . For all transits, Juno observed fine structure on scales of approximately tens of kilometers and confirmed independently with electron and wave measurements that a bifurcated tail can intermittently exist.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3061-3077
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research E: Planets
Issue number11
StatePublished - 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science


Dive into the research topics of 'In situ observations connected to the io footprint tail aurora'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this