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Keywords:

  • Saturn periodicity

[1] Since Saturn's vernal equinox in August 2009 (day 223), energetic electrons (110–365 keV) have exhibited a variety of periodic and aperiodic behavior within a spectral window of 5–15 hours. From late 2009 through the end of 2010, when the observed at dusk, a single period near 10.7 hours dominated the Lomb spectra of these particles. Near the end of 2010, however, the energetic electrons displayed multiple periods, with the strongest at 10.65 hours. The periodicity observed after equinox has a mean value of 10.69 ± 0.06 hours and agreed closely with that of Saturn kilometric radio (south) emissions. By early 2011, when the observer had moved to the dayside, the periodicities abruptly disappeared and the Lomb spectra show no periodicity. This behavior may suggest changes in Saturn's ionosphere as a result of seasonal change, or may alternately imply a local time dependence of periodicity caused by magnetodisk thickness asymmetry.