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Observations of Io’s volcanoes from the IRTF in 2023

Presentation #103.04 in the session Fire and Ice: Io and Beyond (Oral Presentation)

Published onOct 23, 2023
Observations of Io’s volcanoes from the IRTF in 2023

Frequent observations of Io’s volcanoes are vital to understanding volcanic activity and its impacts on the Jovian system. We continue the ground-based observing campaign of Io’s volcanoes using the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF) on Mauna Kea in Hawaii. There are three modes we use to study Io: first, imaging Io as it is eclipsed behind Jupiter’s shadow; second, obtaining occultation light curves through movies while Io goes behind Jupiter and is eclipsed by the sun; and third, capturing images while Io is illuminated by sunlight. This presentation will primarily focus on the first two methods although this only reveals the sub-Jovian hemisphere of Io.

Previous observations of this observing campaign found notable activity from Loki, Io’s largest volcano, which displays periodic eruptions. We will present the most recent volcanic activity with observations obtained during the first semester of 2023. There are twelve observations for this period; the list of dates is given in Table 1.

Table 1: Demonstrates the dates of observation in 2023 and the type of observation whether an eclipse or daylight observation

Table 1

Date of Observation

Type of Observation

June 8th

Io Eclipse

June 15th

Io Eclipse

June 17th

Service Observing

June 18th

Service Observing

June 28th

Service Observing

July 1st

Io Eclipse

July 2nd

Io Eclipse

July 8th

MSC Daylight Obs, Io eclipse

July 12th

Service Observing

July 17th

Io Eclipse

July 28th

Service Observing

July 31st

MSC Daylight Obs, Io eclipse

Acknowledgments:

We wish to acknowledge the significant cultural role that Mauna Kea has always had within the indigenous Hawaiian community. We are very fortunate to have the opportunity to conduct observations from this mountain.

Footnote:

IS and MP were Visiting Astronomers at the Infrared Telescope Facility, which is operated by the University of Hawaii under contract 80HQTR19D0030 with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

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