Jupiter’s Bizarre Magnetic field

How Jupiter’s Bizarre Magnetic field structures its aurora

  • Date

    October 18,2022

  • Time


  • Venue


  • Speaker

    Dr. Binzheng ZHANG Department of Earth Sciences, HKU

Besides the surprising internal structure, deep atmospheric circulation and none-dipole magnetic field distribution, weak radiation belt, upper atmospheric heating at Jupiter, Juno has also found surprising auroral activities near the polar region of Jupiter, which is related to the dynamics of the Jovian magnetosphere. Unlike the Earth’s magnetosphere, which is mainly driven by the solar wind and interplanetary magnetic field, Juno measurements suggest little dependence of the magnetospheric/auroral activities on the solar wind. Therefore, internal dynamics of the Jovian magnetosphere, due to the fast rotation and plasma source of Io, create these spectacular aurorae in Jupiter’s polar atmosphere. For example, the auroral regions poleward of the main emission, which are identified as “aurorally” active, contain heavy ions such as O+ originated from the Jovian magnetosphere. Moreover, the conjugation between the two hemispheres suggests that the polar region of the Jovian magnetosphere may be closed rather than open. I will also show high-resolution supercomputer calculations of the global Jovian magnetosphere with possible topology of the magnetic field lines connecting the polar regions, which is consistent with recent Juno observations.

Additional information: Dr. Binzheng ZHANG,