[Previous] | [Session 12] | [Next]
G.R. Gladstone, T. Majeed (SwRI), J.I. Moses (LPI), J.H. Waite, Jr. (SPRL/U. Michigan), M.A. Allen, Y.L. Yung (Caltech/JPL), W.R. Pryor (LASP/U. Colorado)
Recent STIS data indicate that the jovian aurora occasionally deposits an energy flux of several W/m2 into the upper atmosphere, most of which penetrates the homopause into hydrocarbon-rich layers. The energetic electrons which carry this flux are thought to initiate the formation of complex hydrocarbons and soot-like aerosols which settle into and blanket the polar stratosphere. Because of the large number of important species and reactions involved, until recently there has been little attention paid to the problem of simulating jovian auroral chemistry. We have modified the Caltech/JPL KINETICS code for general atmospheric chemistry for the investigation of jovian auroral chemistry. Building on the recent work by Perry et~al. (J. Geophys. Res., 104, 16,451, 1999), Wong et~al. (Astrophys. J., 534, L215, 2000), and Moses et~al. (Icarus, 143, 244, 2000; J. Geophys. Res., 105, 7013, 2000), we have updated and included several hundred neutral-neutral and ion-neutral reactions to provide a basis for studying the effects of energetic electron impact on the auroral region atmosphere of Jupiter. We present here the initial results from this study, concentrating on the main ion-neutral pathways for producing complex hydrocarbons, and examining the role of the simplest aromatic compound, c-C3H3+.