Internal and external geophysics of the bodies of the Solar System

The study of the characteristics of Schumann resonance observed by Huygens during his parachute descent provided a first estimate of the thickness of the ice layer below the surface of Titan based on a probable ocean of liquid water (C. Béghin, C. Sotin and M. Hamelin, 2010).
A sophisticated analysis of the variation in the upper profile of the amplitude of the electric field in the lower atmosphere to the surface led to a more accurate estimate of the thickness of the ice cover in a range of 40 to 80 km, below which an ocean of ammonia water (C. Béghin, et al., 2012).

Huygens’ measurements also led to a new modeling of the electrical conductivity of the lower stratosphere between about 150 and 60 km (M. Alabhya et al., 2014). This work has brought a new constraint on the electrical charge of aerosols, which play an important role in controlling the electrical profile of the atmosphere, but with great uncertainty due to the lack of experimental laboratory measurements on the photoelectric properties of aerosols.

This work has highlighted the value of electric field measurements as a diagnostic tool for the diagnosis of Titan’s atmosphere and its subsurface for future missions.

Contact : 
C. Beghin
J.-P. Lebreton