37th DPS Meeting, 4-9 September 2005
Session 30 Outer Planets
Poster, Tuesday, September 6, 2005, 6:00-7:15pm, Music Lecture Room 5

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[30.20] Searching for Temporal Variations in Jupiter's Equatorial Zonal Winds

B. W. Poston (UMD), A. A. Simon-Miller (NASA GSFC), G. S. Orton (JPL), N. Stone (Cornell)

We present preliminary findings on the search for short-period zonal wind variations in Jupiter's equatorial atmosphere. There are many causes for such variations, from planetary waves and other mechanical forcing to seasonal radiative forcing, occurring over a variety of timescales. The expected wind variations are small, so large numbers of measurements were made on high spatial resolution Hubble Space Telescope 953-nm image pairs to achieve the smallest possible uncertainties. This continuum filter was chosen to allow tracking of tracers in the cloud deck with less Rayleigh scattering than is seen at shorter wavelengths, improving small cloud feature determination, particularly in Jupiter's belt regions. In addition, using the same filter in each data set helps to eliminate the confusion of possible wind changes with altitude. Thus, we present detailed equatorial wind profiles from HST near-infrared images taken on multiple dates from 1994 through 1998. The wind profile variations are compared with temperatures obtained over this time period at the NASA IRTF and searched for short period oscillations that could be associated with a Quasi-Quadrennial Oscillation, other wave forcing, or a seasonal response. This work was supported by funding from the NASA Planetary Atmospheres program.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #3
© 2004. The American Astronomical Soceity.