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Anelastic dynamo models for the magnetic fields of Uranus and Neptune

Presentation #302.09 in the session Giant Planet Interior Structure and Dynamics (Oral Presentation)

Published onOct 23, 2023
Anelastic dynamo models for the magnetic fields of Uranus and Neptune

The magnetic fields of Uranus and Neptune are distinctive across the solar system, where the dipole component is comparable to or smaller than the quadupole and octupole components and is significantly tilted away from the rotation axis. These dynamo-driven magnetic fields are thought to result from convection in their interiors. Here, we carry out a suite of numerical dynamo models with a background density profile that includes both the deep interior and the atmosphere to include coupling between these regions. Three amplitudes of convective driving are also considered, motivated by the large energy balance differences between Uranus (lowest ratio of emitted thermal to absorbed solar energies among the giant planets) and Neptune (which has the highest ratio). All models produce multipolar magnetic fields, but are so far challenged to produce the prominent m=1 (equatorial) mode of the observations. Ongoing work is exploring the additional role of electrical conductivity variations with radius to determine under what conditions ice giant-like magnetic fields can be obtained.

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