Review

Saturn: Atmosphere, Ionosphere, and Magnetosphere

Science  19 Mar 2010:
Vol. 327, Issue 5972, pp. 1476-1479
DOI: 10.1126/science.1179119

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Abstract

The Cassini spacecraft has been in orbit around Saturn since 30 June 2004, yielding a wealth of data about the Saturn system. This review focuses on the atmosphere and magnetosphere and briefly outlines the state of our knowledge after the Cassini prime mission. The mission has addressed a host of fundamental questions: What processes control the physics, chemistry, and dynamics of the atmosphere? Where does the magnetospheric plasma come from? What are the physical processes coupling the ionosphere and magnetosphere? And, what are the rotation rates of Saturn’s atmosphere and magnetosphere?

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