Ambipolar electrostatic field in negatively charged dusty plasma

L. Z. Hadid*, O. Shebanits, J. E. Wahlund, M. W. Morooka, A. F. Nagy, W. M. Farrell, M. K.G. Holmberg, R. Modolo, A. M. Persoon, W. L. Tseng, S. Y. Ye

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We study the effect of negatively charged dust on the magnetic-field-aligned polarisation electrostatic field using Cassini's RPWS/LP in situ measurements during the 'ring-grazing' orbits. We derive a general expression for and estimate for the first time in situ (approximately) near the Janus and Epimetheus rings. We further demonstrate that the presence of the negatively charged dust close to the ring plane amplifies by at least one order of magnitude and reverses its direction due to the effect of the charged dust gravitational and inertial forces. Such reversal confines the electrons at the magnetic equator within the dusty region, around above the ring plane. Furthermore, we discuss the role of the collision terms, in particular the ion-dust drag force, in amplifying. These results imply that the charged dust, as small as nanometres in size, can have a significant influence on the plasma transport, in particular ambipolar diffusion along the magnetic field lines, and so their presence must be taken into account when studying such dynamical processes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number555880201
JournalJournal of Plasma Physics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Apr 23


  • astrophysical plasmas
  • dusty plasmas
  • space plasma physics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics


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