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Detection of meteoroid hypervelocity impacts on the Cluster spacecraft: First results
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Physics.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2177-0955
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Physics. Swedish Institute of Space Physics, Kiruna, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6435-3081
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2017 (English)In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Space Physics, ISSN 2169-9380, E-ISSN 2169-9402, Vol. 122, no 6, p. 6485-6494Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We present the first study of dust impact events on one of the Earth-orbiting Cluster satellites. The events were identified in the measurements of the wide band data (WBD) instrument on board the satellite operating in monopole configuration. Since 2009 the instrument is operating in this configuration due to the loss of three electric probes and is therefore measuring the potential between the only operating antenna and the spacecraft body. Our study shows that the WBD instrument on Cluster 1 is able to detect pulses generated by dust impacts and discusses four such events. The presence of instrumental effects, intensive natural waves, noncontinuous sampling modes, and the automatic gain control complicates this detection. Due to all these features, we conclude that the Cluster spacecraft are not ideal for dust impact studies. We show that the duration and amplitudes of the pulses recorded by Cluster are similar to pulses detected by STEREO, and the shape of the pulses can be described with the model of the recollection of impact cloud electrons by the positively charged spacecraft. We estimate that the detected impacts were generated by micron-sized grains with velocities in the order of tens of km/s.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 122, no 6, p. 6485-6494
Keywords [en]
hypervelocity impact, dust detection, interplanetary dust
National Category
Fusion, Plasma and Space Physics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-138045DOI: 10.1002/2016JA023755ISI: 000405534800040OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-138045DiVA, id: diva2:1131232
Available from: 2017-08-14 Created: 2017-08-14 Last updated: 2019-09-09Bibliographically approved

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Vaverka, JakubPellinen-Wannberg, AstaDe Spiegeleer, AlexandreHamrin, MariaNorberg, CarolPitkänen, Timo

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