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Particle Environment Package (PEP) for the JUICE mission: current status and coming activities

Presentation #314.09 in the session Icy Satellites, Fields and Particles (Poster + Lightning Talk)

Published onOct 23, 2023
Particle Environment Package (PEP) for the JUICE mission: current status and coming activities

Particle Environment Package (PEP) onboard ESA Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE) suite provides measurements of the particle populations in the Jovian system to answer three overarching science questions:

(1) How does the co-rotating magnetosphere of Jupiter interact with Ganymede, Callisto, Europa, and Io?

(2) How do internal and solar wind drivers cause such energetic, time variable and multi-scale phenomena in the steadily rotating giant magnetosphere of Jupiter?

(3) What are the structure and composition of the icy moons exospheres and how do they response to the external conditions?

PEP measures positive and negative ions, electrons, exospheric neutral gas, thermal plasma and energetic neutral atoms (ENA) present in all domains of the Jupiter system over nine (9) decades of energy from < 0.001 eV to > 1 MeV with full angular coverage. The six PEP sensors are:

  • Jovian plasma Dynamics and Composition analyzer (JDC);

  • Jovian Electrons and Ions analyzer (JEI);

  • Jovian Energetic Electrons (JoEE);

  • Jovian Energetic Neutrals and Ions sensors (JENI);

  • Jovian Neutrals Analyzer (JNA);

  • Neutral gas and Ion Mass spectrometer (NIM).

The six PEP sensors are grouped into two groups PEP-Lo (JDC, JEI, JNA, NIM) and PEP-Hi (JENI, JoEE) covering energy ranges up to 10s keV and up to 1 MeV respectively. The PEP-Hi and PEP-Lo energy ranges well overlap.

For the first time at Jupiter PEP combines global imaging via remote sensing using ENAs with in-situ measurements and performs global imaging of Europa/Io tori and magnetosphere combined with energetic ion measurements. Using low energy ENAs originating from the particle – surface interaction PEP investigate space weathering of the icy moons by precipitation particles. PEP will first-ever directly sample the exospheres of Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto with high mass resolution.

JUICE successfully launched on 14 April, 2023. In May – June 20023, PEP-Hi was fully commissioned and PEP-Lo was partially commissioned to the degree possible due to residual outgassing of the spacecraft. For the coming months, PEP-Lo commissioning continues and PEP-Hi starts cruise phase observation.

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