The ion measurements of the Cassini Plasma Spectrometer are presented which were acquired on 26 December 2005, during the T9 flyby at Titan. The plasma flow and magnetic field directions in the distant plasma environment of the moon were distinctly different from the other flybys. The near-Titan environment, dominated by ions of Titan origin, had a split signature, each with different ion composition; the first region was dominated by dense, slow, and cold ions in the 16-19 and 28-40 amu mass range, the second region contained only ions with mass 1 and 2, much less dense and less slow. Magnetospheric ions penetrate marginally into region 1, whereas the region-2 ion population is mixed. A detailed analysis has led us to conclude that the first event was due to the crossing of the mantle of Titan, whereas the second one very likely was a wake crossing. The split indicates the non-convexity of the ion-dominated volume around Titan. Both ion distributions are analysed in detail.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)