Journal Article

Atmospheric circulation of tidally locked exoplanets: II. Dual-band radiative transfer and convective adjustment

Kevin Heng, Dargan M. W. Frierson and Peter J. Phillipps

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 418, issue 4, pages 2669-2696
Published in print December 2011 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online December 2011 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Atmospheric circulation of tidally locked exoplanets: II. Dual-band radiative transfer and convective adjustment

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Improving upon our purely dynamical work, we present three-dimensional simulations of the atmospheric circulation on Earth-like (exo)planets and hot Jupiters using the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL)-Princeton Flexible Modelling System (fms). As the first steps away from the dynamical benchmarks of Heng, Menou & Phillipps, we add dual-band radiative transfer and dry convective adjustment schemes to our computational set-up. Our treatment of radiative transfer assumes stellar irradiation to peak at a wavelength shorter than and distinct from that at which the exoplanet re-emits radiation (‘shortwave’ versus ‘longwave’), and also uses a two-stream approximation. Convection is mimicked by adjusting unstable lapse rates to the dry adiabat. The bottom of the atmosphere is bounded by a uniform slab with a finite thermal inertia. For our models of hot Jupiter, we include an analytical formalism for calculating temperature–pressure profiles, in radiative equilibrium, which accounts for the effect of collision-induced absorption via a single parameter. We discuss our results within the context of the following: the predicted temperature–pressure profiles and the absence/presence of a temperature inversion; the possible maintenance, via atmospheric circulation, of the putative high-altitude, shortwave absorber expected to produce these inversions; the angular/temporal offset of the hotspot from the substellar point, its robustness to our ignorance of hyperviscosity and hence its utility in distinguishing between different hot Jovian atmospheres; and various zonal-mean flow quantities. Our work bridges the gap between three-dimensional simulations which are purely dynamical and those which incorporate multiband radiative transfer, thus contributing to the construction of a required hierarchy of three-dimensional theoretical models.

Keywords: methods: numerical; planets and satellites: atmospheres

Journal Article.  13584 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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