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The initial temporal evolution of a feedback dynamo for Mercury

Heyner, D. and Schmitt, J. and Wicht, K.-H. and Glassmeier, K.-H. and Korth, H. and Motschmann, U. (2010) The initial temporal evolution of a feedback dynamo for Mercury. Geophysical and Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics, 104 (4), pp. 419-429. Taylor & Francis. DOI: 10.1080/03091921003776839. ISSN 0309-1929.

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Abstract

Various possibilities are currently under discussion to explain the observed weakness of the intrinsic magnetic field of planet Mercury. One of the possible dynamo scenarios is a dynamo with feedback from the magnetosphere. Due to its weak magnetic field, Mercury exhibits a small magnetosphere whose subsolar magnetopause distance is only about 1.7 Hermean radii. We consider the magnetic field due to magnetopause currents in the dynamo region. Since the external field of magnetospheric origin is antiparallel to the dipole component of the dynamo field, a negative feedback results. For an agrΩ-dynamo, two stationary solutions of such a feedback dynamo emerge: one with a weak and the other with a strong magnetic field. The question, however, is how these solutions can be realized. To address this problem, we discuss various scenarios for a simple dynamo model and the conditions under which a steady weak magnetic field can be reached. We find that the feedback mechanism quenches the overall field to a low value of about 100-150 nT if the dynamo is not driven too strongly.

Document Type:Article
Title:The initial temporal evolution of a feedback dynamo for Mercury
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of Authors
Heyner, D.Institut für Geophysik und Extraterrestrische Physik, TU Braunschweig, 38106 Braunschweig, Germany
Schmitt, J.Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, 37191 Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany
Wicht, K.-H.Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, 37191 Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany
Glassmeier, K.-H.Institut für Geophysik und Extraterrestrische Physik, TU Braunschweig, 38106 Braunschweig, Germany; Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, 37191 Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany
Korth, H.Applied Physics Laboratory, The Johns Hopkins University, Laurel, MD 20723-6099, USA
Motschmann, U.Institut für Theoretische Physik, TU Braunschweig, 38106 Braunschweig, Germany; uwe.motschmann@dlr.de
Date:2010
Journal or Publication Title:Geophysical and Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics
Refereed publication:Yes
In SCOPUS:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Volume:104
DOI:10.1080/03091921003776839
Page Range:pp. 419-429
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:0309-1929
Status:Published
Keywords:Mercury; Magnetic field; Dynamo; Magnetosphere
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 Planetenforschung (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Asteroids and Comets
Deposited By: Laura-Maria Brumm
Deposited On:20 Jan 2011 12:26
Last Modified:04 Apr 2013 16:27

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