SPH Calculations of Comet Shoemaker-Levy-9/Jupiter Impact

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Session 14 -- Comets, Asteroids, Meteoroids
Oral presentation, Monday, 30, 1994, 10:00-11:30

[14.02] SPH Calculations of Comet Shoemaker-Levy-9/Jupiter Impact

R.F.Stellingwerf, N.M.Hoffman, C.A.Wingate (LANL)

Smooth Particle Hydrodynamics computations have been carried out of ``phase 2'' (fireball development and rise) of the Shoemaker-Levy 9 impact on Jupiter. Energy deposition was derived from the computations discussed in the previous abstract. Both 2-dimensional axisymmetric and full 3-dimensional computations will be discussed. A fit to the Orton atmosphere of Jupiter was used for the initial density and temperature structure.

These SPH computations clearly show the rise of the expanding heated region on a timescale of about one minute. Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities are generated along the shear layer at the outer edge of the rising gas. At the top of the bubble a hot shock propagates into the outer atmosphere to heights exceeding 400 km, and should be visible from earth. The temperature of this shock approaches 1 eV for the larger fragments, which should trigger emission by the ionized hydrogen.

Parameter studies of the dependence of observables on fragment mass and density are underway and will be reported.

This work and that of the preceding talk are supported by the Department of Energy.

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