High-frequency flux transfer events detected near Mercury
Article first published online: 8 JAN 2013
©2013. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union
Volume 94, Issue 2, page 28, 8 January 2013
How to Cite
2013), High-frequency flux transfer events detected near Mercury, Eos Trans. AGU, 94(2), 28.(
- Issue published online: 8 JAN 2013
- Article first published online: 8 JAN 2013
- Cited By
- flux transfer events;
The physical process that creates connections between the magnetic fields emanating from the Sun and a planet—a process known as magnetic reconnection—creates a portal through which solar plasma can penetrate the planetary magnetic field. The opening of these portals, known as flux transfer events (FTEs), takes place roughly every 8 minutes at Earth and spawns a rope of streaming plasma that is typically about half of the radius of the Earth. As early as 1985, scientists analyzing the Mariner 10 observations, collected during their 1974–1975 flybys, have known that FTEs also occur at Mercury. However, using the measurements returned from the MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft now orbiting Mercury, Slavin et al. found that Mercurial flux transfer events are proportionally much larger, stronger, and more frequent than those at Earth.