Mass-loading, pile-up, and mirror-mode waves at comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

Volwerk, M.; Richter, I.; Tsurutani, B.; Götz, C.; Altwegg, Kathrin; Broiles, T.; Burch, J.; Carr, C.; Cupido, E.; Delva, M.; Dósa, M.; Edberg, N. J. T.; Eriksson, A.; Henri, P.; Koenders, C.; Lebreton, J.-P.; Mandt, K. E.; Nilsson, H.; Opitz, A.; Rubin, Martin; ... (2016). Mass-loading, pile-up, and mirror-mode waves at comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Annales geophysicae, 34(1), pp. 1-15. Copernicus Publications 10.5194/angeo-34-1-2016

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The data from all Rosetta plasma consortium instruments and from the ROSINA COPS instrument are used to study the interaction of the solar wind with the outgassing cometary nucleus of 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. During 6 and 7 June 2015, the interaction was first dominated by an increase in the solar wind dynamic pressure, caused by a higher solar wind ion density. This pressure compressed the draped magnetic field around the comet, and the increase in solar wind electrons enhanced the ionization of the outflow gas through collisional ionization. The new ions are picked up by the solar wind magnetic field, and create a ring/ringbeam distribution, which, in a high-� plasma, is unstable for mirror mode wave generation. Two different kinds of mirror modes are observed: one of small size generated by locally ionized water and one of large size generated by ionization and pick-up farther away from the comet.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Space Research and Planetary Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Altwegg, Kathrin and Rubin, Martin


500 Science > 520 Astronomy
500 Science > 530 Physics
600 Technology > 620 Engineering




Copernicus Publications




Katharina Weyeneth-Moser

Date Deposited:

18 Jul 2017 09:39

Last Modified:

18 Jul 2017 09:39

Publisher DOI:





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