Articles | Volume 24, issue 1
07 Mar 2006
 | 07 Mar 2006

Plasma environment of magnetized asteroids: a 3-D hybrid simulation study

S. Simon, T. Bagdonat, U. Motschmann, and K.-H. Glassmeier

Abstract. The interaction of a magnetized asteroid with the solar wind is studied by using a three-dimensional hybrid simulation code (fluid electrons, kinetic ions). When the obstacle's intrinsic magnetic moment is sufficiently strong, the interaction region develops signs of magnetospheric structures. On the one hand, an area from which the solar wind is excluded forms downstream of the obstacle. On the other hand, the interaction region is surrounded by a boundary layer which indicates the presence of a bow shock. By analyzing the trajectories of individual ions, it is demonstrated that kinetic effects have global consequences for the structure of the interaction region.