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Solar‐Related Variations of the Cloud Top Circulation Above Aphrodite Terra From VMC/Venus Express Wind Fields

Abstract : Winds derived by a digital tracking technique from UV (365 nm) images captured by the Venus Monitoring Camera onboard the Venus Express spacecraft from 2006 through 2013 were used to study the atmospheric circulation at cloud top level (70±2 km). This data set allows variations of the wind speed with both latitude and longitude to be studied and establishes their correlation with surface topography as well as local time dependence. Both zonal and meridional wind components show some correlation with topography. The minimum zonal wind speed was found at noon above Ovda Regio (10° S, 93° E), the highest region of Aphrodite Terra, one of the largest highlands in the equatorial region. The area of slow zonal wind extends to at least 30° S and shifts in the direction of superrotation in the afternoon and with increasing latitude (poleward). The observed deceleration of cloud top wind was recently attributed to the interaction of the gravity (mountain) waves generated by Aphrodite Terra with the atmospheric circulation. The present study was performed for different local time over the mountainous longitudes. The deceleration pattern in the zonal wind field is mainly conserved within a few hours around noon. Systematic longitude shift is observed in the afternoon in the direction of the evening terminator. Another area of perturbation of both zonal and meridional wind components is observed in the equatorial region around LT=13‐14 h and may be explained by the solar tide.
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Submitted on : Thursday, March 4, 2021 - 8:34:32 AM
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Marina V. Patsaeva, Igor V. Khatuntsev, L.V. Zasova, Alain Hauchecorne, D.V. Titov, et al.. Solar‐Related Variations of the Cloud Top Circulation Above Aphrodite Terra From VMC/Venus Express Wind Fields. Journal of Geophysical Research. Planets, Wiley-Blackwell, 2019, 124 (7), pp.1864-1879. ⟨10.1029/2018JE005620⟩. ⟨insu-02162143⟩



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