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Characteristics of Jupiter's X-ray auroral hot spot emissions using Chandra
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  • Dale Michael Weigt,
  • Caitriona M Jackman,
  • Marissa F. Vogt,
  • Harry Arthur Manners,
  • William Dunn,
  • Randy Gladstone,
  • Ralph P. Kraft,
  • Graziella Branduardi-Raymont,
  • Corentin Louis,
  • Seán McEntee
Dale Michael Weigt
University of Southampton, University of Southampton

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Caitriona M Jackman
Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies
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Marissa F. Vogt
Boston University, Boston University
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Harry Arthur Manners
Imperial College London, Imperial College London
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William Dunn
University College London, University College London
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Randy Gladstone
Southwest Research Institute, Southwest Research Institute
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Ralph P. Kraft
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SI), Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SI)
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Graziella Branduardi-Raymont
University College London, University College London
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Corentin Louis
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Seán McEntee
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To help understand and determine the driver of jovian auroral X-rays, we present the first statistical study to focus on the morphology and dynamics of the jovian northern hot spot (NHS) using Chandra data. The catalogue we explore dates from 18 December 2000 up to and including 8 September 2019. Using a numerical criterion, we characterize the typical and extreme behaviour of the concentrated NHS emissions across the catalogue. The mean power of the NHS is found to be 1.91 GW with a maximum brightness of 2.02 Rayleighs (R), representing by far the brightest parts of the jovian X-ray spectrum. We report a statistically significant region of emissions at the NHS center which is always present, the averaged hot spot nucleus (AHSNuc), with mean power of 0.57 GW and inferred average brightness of ∼ 1.2 R. We use a flux equivalence mapping model to link this distinct region of X-ray output to a likely source location and find that the majority of mappable NHS photons emanate from the pre-dusk to pre-midnight sector, coincident with the dusk flank boundary. A smaller cluster maps to the noon magnetopause boundary, dominated by the AHSNuc, suggesting that there may be multiple drivers of X-ray emissions. On application of timing analysis techniques (Rayleigh, Monte Carlo, Jackknife), we identify several instances of statistically significant quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) in the NHS photons ranging from ∼ 2.3-min to 36.4-min, suggesting possible links with ultra-low frequency activity on the magnetopause boundary (e.g. dayside reconnection, Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities).
Sep 2021Published in Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics volume 126 issue 9. 10.1029/2021JA029243