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ISSN  2096-3955

CN  10-1502/P

Citation: Xu, Q., Xu, X. J., Chang, Q., Xu, J. Y., Wang, J., and Ye, Y. D. (2020). An ICME impact on the Martian hydrogen corona. Earth Planet. Phys., 4(1), 38–44.doi: 10.26464/epp2020006

2020, 4(1): 38-44. doi: 10.26464/epp2020006


An ICME impact on the Martian hydrogen corona

State Key Laboratory of Lunar and Planetary Sciences, Macau University of Science and Technology, Macau 999078, China

Corresponding author: XiaoJun Xu,

Received Date: 2019-10-11
Web Publishing Date: 2020-01-01

The Martian hydrogen exosphere extends out of the bow shock, forming a "hydrogen corona". The solar wind interacts directly with the hydrogen corona. During an ICME event on 7 March 2015, the SWIA instrument onboard Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission (MAVEN) observed that the pick-up H+ fluxes in upstream solar wind were enhanced. Also increased were the penetrating H+ fluxes in the Martian atmosphere. Quantitatively, these penetrating H+ fluxes cannot increase by a factor of 5 simply due to a factor of 3 increase in the solar wind density, suggesting that the increased abundance of exospheric hydrogen upstream of the bow shock was a consequence of the passage of the ICME. A denser outer hydrogen corona at high altitudes suggests that the expansion of the neutral atmosphere was caused by the ICME. The excited and heated hydrogen exosphere probably indicates an elevated hydrogen escape rate during an ICME.

Key words: Mars, hydrogen corona, ICME

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An ICME impact on the Martian hydrogen corona

Qi Xu, XiaoJun Xu, Qing Chang, JiaYing Xu, Jing Wang, YuDong Ye