Solar and solar wind energy drivers for O+ and O2+ ion escape at Mars Journal Article uri icon



  • Mars once had a dense atmosphere enabling liquid water existing on its; surface, however, much of that atmosphere has since escaped to space. We; examine how incoming solar and solar wind energy fluxes drive escape of; atomic and molecular oxygen ions (O+ and O2+) at Mars. We use MAVEN data; to evaluate ion escape from February 1, 2016 through May 25, 2022. We; find that Martian O+, and O2+ all have increased escape flux with; increased solar wind kinetic energy flux. Increased solar wind; electromagnetic energy flux also corresponds to increased O+ and O2+; escape flux. Increased solar irradiance (both total and ionizing) does; not obviously increase escape of O+ and O2+. Together, these results; suggest that the solar wind electromagnetic energy flux should be; considered along with the kinetic energy flux, and that other parameters; should be considered when evaluating solar irradiance’s impact on O+ and; O2+ escape.

publication date

  • July 23, 2023

has restriction

  • green

Date in CU Experts

  • July 25, 2023 6:07 AM

Full Author List

  • Schnepf NR; Dong Y; Brain DA; Hanley KG; Peterson WK; Strangeway RJ; Thiemann EMB; Halekas JS; Espley JR; Eparvier FG

author count

  • 11

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