A figure from a new paper of our colleagues has been chosen to feature on the front page of volume 350 of the Icarus journal.
Icarus is a prestigious scientific journal devoted to Solar System studies, published by Elsevier and endorsed by the Division for Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society.
The paper reveals the structure of the ionosphere of comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko during the last month of Rosetta operations, when the fading comet already moved far away from the Sun. The authors were able to describe the spatial structure of the ionosphere using a relatively simple four-parameter model, which projects the maximum of the gas and plasma production onto the Bes region on the surface of the nucleus. The figure itself shows the colour coded plasma density measured along the trajectory in two different coordinate systems. On the top panel the origin is the center of mass of the nucleus and the plane of the figure is perpendicular to the solar direction (CSEQ coordinates); on the bottom panel the density is shown as a function of cometocentric distance and latitude. These last two parameters dominate the plasma density, the ionized gas surrounds the nucleus as an attenuating cloud originating from the southern latitudes.
Our colleauges among the authors of the article are Zoltán Németh, Anikó Timár and Károly Szegő.
Link to the original article: www.sciencedirect.com