Cover: Radiative-convective equilibrium calculations for a two-layer Mars atmosphere

Radiative-convective equilibrium calculations for a two-layer Mars atmosphere

by Conway B. Leovy


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A simulation of diurnal and seasonal variations of ground and atmospheric temperatures on Mars by a model incorporating the effects of radiation, small-scale turbulent convection, and conduction into the ground. The model is based on the assumptions that the surface pressure is 5 mb and that the atmosphere is composed entirely of carbon dioxide. Two adjustable parameters in the model are calibrated by comparison with the diurnal temperature variation observed by Sinton and Strong (1960). One of the most interesting results of the calculations is the prediction of an icecap composed of solid carbon dioxide, whose maximum extent corresponds with that of the observed Martian polar cap. Some dynamical implications of carbon dioxide concentration are explored, and possible flyby experiments to further illuminate the Martian meteorology are discussed.

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