The Center for Atmospheric Sciences | » HU:CARE Seminar Series: Emma Dahl (NMSU)

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  • HU:CARE Seminar Series: Emma Dahl (NMSU)

    The color and structure of Jupiter’s clouds during the Juno Era

      Abstract
    : The identity of the coloring agent(s) that give Jupiter’s clouds their reddish hues and the exact vertical structure of those clouds are still major outstanding areas of study. In order to investigate the color and structure of the uppermost cloud deck (as well as provide context for the Juno mission at Jupiter), we have obtained hyperspectral image cubes of Jupiter covering 470-950 nm with the NMSU Acousto-optic Imaging Camera (NAIC) at the 3.5-m telescope at Apache Point Observatory in Sunspot, NM. We then used the resulting image cubes and radiative transfer models to test the validity of the Crème Brûlée model of Jupiter’s atmosphere on banded cloud structures during both quiescent periods and major weather events, such as a South Equatorial Belt outbreak storm in 2017 and a disturbed Equatorial Zone in 2019. We find that the Crème Brûlée model is often a sufficient parameterization of Jupiter’s atmosphere, producing further evidence for the theory of a “universal chromophore” created by upwelling ammonia gas reacting with acetylene.