Profiles of Ion and Aerosol Interactions in Planetary Atmospheres
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- Tripathi, S.N., Michael, M. & Harrison, R.G. Space Sci Rev (2008) 137: 193. doi:10.1007/s11214-008-9367-7
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In planetary atmospheres the nature of the aerosols varies, as does the relative importance of different sources of ion production. The nature of the aerosol and ion production is briefly reviewed here for the atmospheres of Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Titan using the concepts established for the terrestrial atmosphere. Interactions between the ions formed and aerosols present cause (1) charge exchange, which can lead to substantial aerosol charge and (2) ion removal. Consequences of (1) are that (a) charged aerosol are more effectively removed by conducting liquid droplets than uncharged aerosol and (b) particle–particle coagulation rates are modified, influencing particle residence times in the relevant atmosphere. Consequences of (2) are that ions are removed in regions with abundant aerosol, which may preclude charge flow in an atmosphere, such as that associated with an atmospheric electrical circuit. In general, charge should be included in microphysical modeling of the properties of planetary aerosols.