EGU General Assembly 2022
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Revised Modular Model of Mercury’s Magnetospheric Magnetic Field

Kristin Pump, Daniel Heyner, and Ferdinand Plaschke
Kristin Pump et al.
  • Institute for Geophysics and extraterrestrial Physics, TU Braunschweig, Germany

Mercury is the smallest an innermost planet of our solar system and has a dipole-dominated internal magnetic field that is relatively weak, very axisymmetric and significantly offset towards north. Through the interaction with the solar wind, this field leads to a magnetosphere. Compared to the magnetosphere of Earth, Mercury’s magnetosphere is smaller and more dynamic. To understand the magnetospheric structures and processes we use in-situ MESSENGER data to develop a semi-empiric model, which can explain the observations and help to improve the mission planning for the BepiColombo mission en-route to Mercury.

We will present this semi-empiric KTH-model, a modular model to calculate the magnetic field inside the Hermean magnetosphere. Korth et al. (2015 and 2017) published a model, which is the basis for the KTH-Model. In this new version, the calculation of the magnetic field for the neutral current sheet is restructured based on observations rather than ad-hoc assumptions so that the description is more realistic. Furthermore, a new model is added to depict the partial ring current. An analysis of the residuals shows a better visibility of the field-aligned currents. In addition, this model offers the possibility to improve the main field determination.

How to cite: Pump, K., Heyner, D., and Plaschke, F.: Revised Modular Model of Mercury’s Magnetospheric Magnetic Field, EGU General Assembly 2022, Vienna, Austria, 23–27 May 2022, EGU22-8445,, 2022.