We report results of a study of true temporal variations in Io's sodium cloud before and after eclipse by Jupiter. The eclipse geometry is important because there is a hypothesis that the atmosphere partially condenses when the satellite enters the Jupiter's shadow, preventing sodium from being released to the cloud in the hours immediately after the reappearance. The challenge lies in disentangling true variations in sodium content from the changing strength of resonant scattering due Io's changing Doppler shift in the solar sodium absorption line. We undertook some observing runs at Telescopio Nazionale Galileo (TNG) at La Palma Canary Island with the high resolution spectrograph SARG in order to observe Io entering into Jupiter's shadow and coming out from it. The particular configuration chosen for the observations allowed us to observe Io far enough from Jupiter and to disentangle line-of-sight effects looking perpendicularly at the sodium cloud. We will present results which took advantage of a very careful reduction strategy. We remove the dependence from γ-factor, which is the fraction of solar light available for resonant scattering, in order to remove the dependence on the radial velocity of Io with respect to the Sun.
This work has been supported by NSF's Planetary Astronomy Program, INAF/TNG and the Department of Astronomy and Cisas of University of Padova, through a contract by the Italian Space Agency ASI.