Spin axis offset calibration on THEMIS using mirror modes
- 1Institut für Geophysik und extraterrestrische Physik, Braunschweig, Germany
- 2Space Research Institute, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Graz, Austria
Abstract. A newly developed method for determining spin axis offsets of magnetic field instruments on spacecraft is applied to THEMIS. The formerly used determination method, relying on solar wind Alfvénic fluctuations, was rarely applicable due to the orbital restrictions of the mission. With the new procedure, based on magnetic field observation of mirror modes in the magnetosheath, updated spin axis offsets can be estimated approximately once per year. Retrospective calibration of all THEMIS magnetic field measurements is thereby made possible. Since, up to this point, spin axis offsets could hardly ever be calculated due to the mission's orbits, this update represents a substantial improvement to the data. The approximate offset stability is estimated to be < 0.75 nT year−1 for the complete course of the mission.