DPS 2001 meeting, November 2001
Session 17. Io, Tori, and Satellite Atmospheres Posters
Displayed, 9:00am Tuesday - 3:00pm Saturday, Highlighted, Wednesday, November 28, 2001, 10:30am-12:30pm, French Market Exhibit Hall

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[17.12] Persistence and Variability of Large-Scale Longitudinal Structure in the Io Plasma Torus

R.C. Woodward Jr., F.L. Roesler (U Wisc), R.J. Oliversen (NASA/GSFC), F. Scherb (U Wisc), H.W. Moos (JHU)

The first spectroscopic FUV images of Io revealed a two-fold brightening of all bright neutral emission lines over the four-hour HST ``visit'' on October 14, 1997 {\em [Roesler 1999]\/}. We subsequently found simultaneous brightenings in [\ion{O}{1}] 6300Å\ Io emission {\em [Oliversen 2001]} and [\ion{S}{2}] 1256Å\ torus emission. {\em [Woodward 2001a]}. A preliminary analysis of our extensive set of [\ion{S}{2}] 6731Å\ groundbased images of the Io torus {\em [Woodward 1999]} showed a longitudinal emission enhancement from ~ 70\arcdeg--160\arcdeg {\em [Woodward 2001b]}. We now find that this enhancement was present in September 1997 as well, but at significantly reduced contrast (see figure). In this work, we study the persistence and variability of this and other longitudinal structures in the torus, based on STIS and groundbased data.

This work was supported in part by NASA grants NAS5-30131, NAG5-6787, NAG5-6546, and RTOP 344-32-30.

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