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Excitation mechanisms for Jovian seismic modes

Markham, Steve and Stevenson, Dave (2018) Excitation mechanisms for Jovian seismic modes. Icarus, 306 . pp. 200-213. ISSN 0019-1035. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2018.02.015.

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Recent (2011) results from the Nice Observatory indicate the existence of global seismic modes on Jupiter in the frequency range between 0.7 and 1.5 mHz with amplitudes of tens of cm/s. Currently, the driving force behind these modes is a mystery; the measured amplitudes are many orders of magnitude larger than anticipated based on theory analogous to helioseismology (that is, turbulent convection as a source of stochastic excitation). One of the most promising hypotheses is that these modes are driven by Jovian storms. This work constructs a framework to analytically model the expected equilibrium normal mode amplitudes arising from convective columns in storms. We also place rough constraints on Jupiter’s seismic modal quality factor. Using this model, neither meteor strikes, turbulent convection, nor water storms can feasibly excite the order of magnitude of observed amplitudes. Next we speculate about the potential role of rock storms deeper in Jupiter’s atmosphere, because the rock storms’ expected energy scales make them promising candidates to be the chief source of excitation for Jovian seismic modes, based on simple scaling arguments. We also suggest some general trends in the expected partition of energy between different frequency modes. Finally we supply some commentary on potential applications to gravity, Juno, Cassini and Saturn, and future missions to Uranus and Neptune.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Stevenson, Dave0000-0001-9432-7159
Additional Information:© 2018 Elsevier Inc. Received 26 October 2017, Revised 18 January 2018, Accepted 12 February 2018, Available online 13 February 2018.
Group:Astronomy Department
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180425-144716069
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Official Citation:Steve Markham, Dave Stevenson, Excitation mechanisms for Jovian seismic modes, Icarus, Volume 306, 2018, Pages 200-213, ISSN 0019-1035, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:86047
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:25 Apr 2018 22:44
Last Modified:15 Nov 2021 20:34

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