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Analytical Solution for Waves in Planets with Atmospheric Superrotation. I. Acoustic and Inertia-Gravity Waves

J. Peralta, T. Imamura, P. L. Read, D. Luz, A. Piccialli, M. A. López-Valverde

This paper is the first of a two-part study devoted to developing tools for a systematic classification of the wide variety of atmospheric waves expected on slowly rotating planets with atmospheric superrotation. Starting with the primitive equations for a cyclostrophic regime, we have deduced the analytical solution for the possible waves, simultaneously including the effect of the metric terms for the centrifugal force and the meridional shear of the background wind. In those cases when the conditions for the method of the multiple scales in height are met, these wave solutions are also valid when vertical shear of the background wind is present. A total of six types of waves have been found and their properties were characterized in terms of the corresponding dispersion relations and wave structures. In this first part, only waves that are direct solutions of the generic dispersion relation are studied---acoustic and inertia-gravity waves. Concerning inertia-gravity waves, we found that in the cases of short horizontal wavelengths, null background wind, or propagation in the equatorial region, only pure gravity waves are possible, while for the limit of large horizontal wavelengths and/or null static stability, the waves are inertial. The correspondence between classical atmospheric approximations and wave filtering has been examined too, and we carried out a classification of the mesoscale waves found in the clouds of Venus at different vertical levels of its atmosphere. Finally, the classification of waves in exoplanets is discussed and we provide a list of possible candidates with cyclostrophic regimes.

methods: analytical, methods: data analysis, planets and satellites: atmospheres, waves

The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series
Volume 213, Number 1, Page 17_1
2014 July

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Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa Universidade do Porto Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia da Universidade de Coimbra
Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia COMPETE 2020 PORTUGAL 2020 União Europeia