The past four decades have resulted in an abundance of in situ and remote observations of the jovian and saturnian magnetospheres, neutral atmospheres, and ionospheres (e.g. from Cassini, Galileo, Voyager, Pioneer, Ulysses, Hubble Space Telescope, Keck, SPRINT-A/Exceed). However, observations are limited in their spatial and temporal coverage. Effective data exploitation and interpretation depend on detailed numerical models to maximize the physical understanding gained from the extensive data sets available at Jupiter and Saturn. These models employ fundamental physics and known system parameters to simulate, and predict, the behavior of the jovian and saturnian systems. By increasing the communication between models of different physical regimes, we will significantly improve our ability to exploit and interpret data sets from Jupiter and Saturn, as well as help guide future mission planning.
We propose an international team, hosted by ISSI, to develop a comprehensive numerical description of the jovian and saturnian global systems from the outer magnetosphere, where the solar wind interacts with the magnetopause, to the upper planetary atmosphere. Currently, models focus on a specific spatial domain (i.e., magnetosphere, atmosphere, etc.), using simplified boundary conditions to approximate the neighboring regions. We plan to build a global view of the numerical system by: (1) comparing and contrasting the existing models within the same physical regime; (2) refining model boundaries and inputs to increase the exchange of information between models of two neighbouring spatial regimes; and (3) standardizing visualizations, data assimilation, and communication of model details and results to maximize usefulness to the broader community.
The proposed team is composed of experts from the following areas of numerical modeling: general circulation models of the neutral atmosphere, magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling, ionospheric electron transport and global magnetospheric magnetohydrodynamics. Some of our team members are also experts in data analysis, which is essential for optimizing the usefulness of numerical models to the broader community. The proposed work will be carried out over the course of two separate one-week meetings (autumn 2014 and summer/autumn 2015) and we anticipate a substantive number of publications ensuing from this proposed team.
Our full proposal can be found here.