The magnetosphere of Jupiter is a giant cavity dominated by the magnetic field of this largest of planets - its dynamics are controlled by the fast planetary rotation. The first comprehensive picture of the solar wind-Jupiter magnetosphere interactions was the result of the Voyager 1 and 2 space probe flybys. Subsequent missions (Ulysses and Cassini as well as the Galileo orbiter) have refined this picture and added new detail to it.
Jupiter research studies at the Space Research Institute of the Austrian Academy of Sciences concentrate on the radio emissions generated within the Jovian magnetosphere. The measurements by terrestrial ground stations like the Lustbühel Observatory in Graz (Austria) and the cooperating observatories Reseau Decametrique Nançay (France) and UTR-2 Kharkov (world's largest in the Ukraine) in combination with spacecraft like Galileo, Cassini (orbiting Saturn) and WIND (orbiting Earth) are specifically treated in a number of different projects.
The development and manufacture of radio-receivers and radio telescope ground station equipment is an essential part of our scientific work. Data analysis and interpretation is primarily done by computing so-called dynamic spectra and scalograms, with Jupiter millisecond radio bursts being the prime research topic.
Further theoretical research is performed on the Jupiter-Io interaction, where the relative motion of a conducting surface (the ionosphere of Jupiter's moon Io) and a magnetic field (the rotating field of Jupiter) produces unique phenomena near Io and its magnetic flux tube. These processes are also strongly influenced by Io's volcanism.