Magnetic investigations for studying planetary interiors

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M. Chiappini
A. De Santis


Most of the magnetic methods used for investigating planetary interiors are based on the reasonable hypothesis that the mechanism for the origin of the field is an Earth-like hydromagnetic dynamo: in this case the planet has an electrically conducting fluid shell within it as in the case of the Earth's core. The present paper describes several techniques of planetary magnetic investigation which give important clues on the internal constitution of planets. Some considerations on the possible mechanisms for maintaining a dynamo and simple concepts with the help of a few non-dimensional numbers are also introduced and discussed. Then some fundamental relationships are given in order to relate the planetary magnetism to other physical parameters, such as angular rotation, core dimensions etc. It finally summarizes some results available for the planets of the Solar System.

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Chiappini M, De Santis A. Magnetic investigations for studying planetary interiors. Ann. Geophys. [Internet]. 1994Apr.18 [cited 2021Jun.24];37(1). Available from:

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