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Possible evidence of p-modes in Cassini measurements of Saturn's gravity field

Markham, Steve and Durante, Daniele and Iess, Luciano and Stevenson, Dave (2021) Possible evidence of p-modes in Cassini measurements of Saturn's gravity field. . (Unpublished)

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We analyze the range rate residual data from Cassini's gravity experiment that cannot be explained with a static, zonally symmetric gravity field. In this paper we reproduce the data using a simple forward model of gravity perturbations from normal modes. To do this, we stack data from multiple flybys to improve sensitivity. We find a partially degenerate set of normal mode energy spectra which successfully reproduce the unknown gravity signal from Cassini's flybys. Although there is no unique solution, we find that the models most likely to fit the data are dominated by gravitational contributions from p-modes between 500-700uHz. Because f-modes at lower frequencies have stronger gravity signals for a given amplitude, this result would suggest strong frequency dependence in normal mode excitation on Saturn. We predict peak amplitudes for p-modes on the order of several kilometers, at least an order of magnitude larger than the peak amplitudes inferred by Earth-based observations of Jupiter. The large p-mode amplitudes we predict on Saturn, if they are indeed present and steady state, would imply weak damping with a lower bound of Q > 10⁷ for these modes, consistent with theoretical predictions.

Item Type:Report or Paper (Discussion Paper)
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URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Durante, Daniele0000-0002-7888-3021
Stevenson, Dave0000-0001-9432-7159
Additional Information:Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0).
Group:Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20211217-233231131
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:112543
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:20 Dec 2021 17:02
Last Modified:02 Jun 2023 01:17

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