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Degree-one convection and the origin of Enceladus’ dichotomy

Grott, M. and Sohl, F. and Hussmann, H. (2007) Degree-one convection and the origin of Enceladus’ dichotomy. Icarus, 191 (1), pp. 203-210. Elsevier. DOI: 10.1016/j.icarus.2007.05.001. ISSN 0019-1035.

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Abstract

Recently, the Cassini spacecraft has detected ongoing geologic activity near the south pole of Saturn’smoon Enceladus. In contrast, the satellite’s north-polar region is heavily cratered and appears to have been geologically inactive for a long time. We propose that this hemispheric dichotomy is caused by interior dynamics with degree-one convection driving the south-polar activity. We investigate a number of core sizes and internal heating rates for which degree-one convection occurs. The numerical simulations imply that a core radius of less than 100±20 km and an energy input at a rate of 3.0 to 5.5 GW would be required for degree-one convection to prevail. This is within the range of the observed thermal power release near Enceladus’ south pole. Provided that Enceladus is not fully differentiated, degree-one convection is found to be a viable mechanism to explain Enceladus’ hemispheric dichotomy.

Document Type:Article
Title:Degree-one convection and the origin of Enceladus’ dichotomy
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of Authors
Grott, M.UNSPECIFIED
Sohl, F.UNSPECIFIED
Hussmann, H.UNSPECIFIED
Date:1 November 2007
Journal or Publication Title:Icarus
Refereed publication:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Volume:191
DOI:10.1016/j.icarus.2007.05.001
Page Range:pp. 203-210
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0019-1035
Status:Published
Keywords:Saturn, satellites; Enceladus; Geophysics; Interiors; Thermal histories
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport (old)
HGF - Program:Space (old)
HGF - Program Themes:W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research area:Space
DLR - Program:W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research theme (Project):W - Vorhaben Vergleichende Planetologie (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Planetary Physics
Deposited By: Stefanie Musiol
Deposited On:07 Nov 2007
Last Modified:27 Apr 2009 14:27

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