Spacecraft which have visited other planets in our Solar System have uncovered a wealth of knowledge as to how the space environments of these planets are formed, and how they compare with that of our Earth. Particularly important is the interaction between a planet's magnetic field and the solar wind - the stream of charged particles continually 'blowing away' from the Sun. In this talk, we will look at three important discoveries which have been made with the Cassini spacecraft which has been orbiting the planet Saturn for more than a decade - specifically, discoveries in which Saturn's magnetic field plays an important role. We will also look at some of the plans related to the JUpiter ICy moon Explorer (JUICE) mission, which is going to revisit the magnetosphere of the planet Jupiter in the future, and in particular Jupiter's magnetized moon, Ganymede.
Nick Achilleos is part of the Atmospheric Physics Laboratory in UCL's Department of Physics and Astronomy. His current research interests broadly cover the magnetospheres and ionospheres of giant planets (Jupiter and Saturn) and how these systems are coupled together. Previously, he has been a mission planner for the team who manage the magnetometer instrument onboard the Cassini spacecraft, currently orbiting the planet Saturn - he is a science co-investigator at present for the Cassini magnetometer team, as well as the JMAG magnetometer team for the JUICE (JUpiter ICy moons Explorer) mission, currently being developed and due for launch in 2022.