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Plasma Double Layers at the Boundary between Venus and the Solar Wind

Abstract : The solar wind is slowed, deflected, and heated as it encounters Venus's induced magnetosphere. The importance of kinetic plasma processes to these interactions has not been examined in detail, due to a lack of constraining observations. In this study, kinetic‐scale electric field structures are identified in the Venusian magnetosheath, including plasma double layers. The double layers may be driven by currents or mixing of inhomogeneous plasmas near the edge of the magnetosheath. Estimated double layer spatial scales are consistent with those reported at Earth. Estimated potential drops are similar to electron temperature gradients across the bow shock. Many double layers are found in few high cadence data captures, suggesting that their amplitudes are high relative to other magnetosheath plasma waves. These are the first direct observations of plasma double layers beyond near‐Earth space, supporting the idea that kinetic plasma processes are active in many space plasma environments.
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D.M. Malaspina, K. Goodrich, R. Livi, J. Halekas, M. Mcmanus, et al.. Plasma Double Layers at the Boundary between Venus and the Solar Wind. Geophysical Research Letters, American Geophysical Union, 2020, Accepted Manuscript, ⟨10.1029/2020GL090115⟩. ⟨insu-02968110⟩

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