Browsing by Subject "67P/CHURYUMOV-GERASIMENKO"

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  • Myllys, M.; Henri, P.; Vallieres, X.; Gilet, N.; Nilsson, H.; Palmerio, E.; Turc, L.; Wellbrock, A.; Goldstein, R.; Witasse, O. (2021)
    Context. The Mutual Impedance Probe (RPC-MIP) carried by the Rosetta spacecraft monitored both the plasma density and the electric field in the close environment of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (67P), as the instrument was operating alternatively in two main modes: active and passive. The active mode is used primarily to perform plasma density measurements, while the passive mode enables the instrument to work as a wave analyzer. Aims. We are reporting electric field emissions at the plasma frequency near comet 67P observed by RPC-MIP passive mode. The electric field emissions are related to Langmuir waves within the cometary ionized environment. In addition, this study gives feedback on the density measurement capability of RPC-MIP in the presence of cold electrons. Methods. We studied the occurrence rate of the electric field emissions as well as their dependence on solar wind structures like stream interaction regions (SIRs) and coronal mass ejections (CMEs). Results. We are showing that strong electric field emissions at the plasma frequency near 67P were present sporadically throughout the period when Rosetta was escorting the comet, without being continuous, as the occurrence rate is reported to be of about 1% of all the measured RPC-MIP passive spectra showing strong electric field emissions. The Langmuir wave activity monitored by RPC-MIP showed measurable enhancements during SIR or CME interactions and near perihelion. Conclusions. According to our results, Langmuir waves are a common feature at 67P during the passage of SIRs. Comparing the plasma frequency given by the RPC-MIP passive mode during Langmuir wave periods with the RPC-MIP active mode observations, we conclude that the measurement accuracy of RPC-MIP depends on the operational submode when the cold electron component dominates the electron density.
  • Alho, Markku; Jarvinen, Riku; Wedlund, Cyril Simon; Nilsson, Hans; Kallio, Esa; Pulkkinen, Tuija (2021)
    Despite the long escort by the ESA Rosetta mission, direct observations of a fully developed bow shock around 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko have not been reported. Expanding on our previous work on indirect observations of a shock, we model the large-scale features in cometary pickup ions, and compare the results with the ESA Rosetta Plasma Consortium Ion Composition Analyser ion spectrometer measurements over the pre-perihelion portion of the escort phase. Using our hybrid plasma simulation, an empirical, asymmetric outgassing model for 67P, and varied interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) clock angles, we model the evolution of the large-scale plasma environment. We find that the subsolar bow shock standoff distance is enhanced by asymmetric outgassing with a factor of 2 to 3, reaching up to 18 000 km approaching perihelion. We find that distinct spectral features in simulated pickup ion distributions are present for simulations with shock-like structures, with the details of the spectral features depending on shock standoff distance, heliocentric distance, and IMF configuration. Asymmetric outgassing along with IMF clock angle is found to have a strong effect on the location of the spectral features, while the IMF clock angle causes no significant effect on the bow shock standoff distance. These dependences further complicate the interpretation of the ion observations made by Rosetta. Our data-model comparison shows that the large-scale cometary plasma environment can be probed by remote sensing the pickup ions, at least when the comet's activity is comparable to that of 67P, and the solar wind parameters are known.
  • Escobar-Cerezo, J.; Palmer, C.; Munoz, O.; Moreno, F.; Penttilä, A.; Muinonen, K. (2017)
    The effect of internal inhomogeneities and surface roughness on the scattering behavior of large cosmic dust particles is studied by comparing model simulations with laboratory measurements. The present work shows the results of an attempt to model a dust sample measured in the laboratory with simulations performed by a ray-optics model code. We consider this dust sample as a good analogue for interplanetary and interstellar dust as it shares its refractive index with known materials in these media. Several sensitivity tests have been performed for both structural cases (internal inclusions and surface roughness). Three different samples have been selected to mimic inclusion/coating inhomogeneities: two measured scattering matrices of hematite and white clay, and a simulated matrix for water ice. These three matrices are selected to cover a wide range of imaginary refractive indices. The selection of these materials also seeks to study astrophysical environments of interest such as Mars, where hematite and clays have been detected, and comets. Based on the results of the sensitivity tests shown in this work, we perform calculations for a size distribution of a silicate-type host particle model with inclusions and surface roughness to reproduce the experimental measurements of a dust sample. The model fits the measurements quite well, proving that surface roughness and internal structure play a role in the scattering pattern of irregular cosmic dust particles.