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Wind circulation regimes at Venus' cloud tops: Ground-based Doppler velocimetry using CFHT/ESPaDOnS and comparison with simultaneous cloud tracking measurements using VEx/VIRTIS in February 2011

P. Machado, T. Widemann, D. Luz, J. Peralta

We present new results based on ground-based Doppler spectroscopic measurements, obtained with the ESPaDOnS spectrograph at Canada-France-Hawaii telescope (CFHT) and simultaneous observations of velocity fields, obtained from space by the VIRTIS-M instrument on board the Venus Express spacecraft. These measurements are based on high-resolution spectra of Fraunhofer lines in the visible to NIR range (0.37-1.05 mum) acquired on February 19-21, 2011 at a resolution of about 80,000, measuring Venus' winds at 70 km, using incoming solar radiation scattered by cloud top particles in the observer's direction (Widemann, T., et al., [2007]. Planet. Space Sci. 55, 1741-1756; Widemann, T., et al., [2008]. Planet. Space Sci. 56, 1320-1334). The zonal wind field has been characterized by latitudinal bands, at a phase angle Phi=(68.7±0.3)°, between +10°N and 60°S, by steps of 10°, and from [varphi-varphiE]=-50° to sub-Earth longitude varphiE=0°, by steps of 12°. From space, VIRTIS-M UV (0.38 mum) imaging exposures on the dayside were acquired simultaneously in orbit 1786, providing the first simultaneous cloud-tracking measurements with Doppler velocimetry. From the ground, we measured a zonal mean background velocity of v‾z=(117.3±18.0) m s-1 on February 19, and v‾z=(117.5±14.5) m s-1 on February 21. We detect an unambiguous poleward meridional flow on the morning dayside hemisphere of (18.8 ± 12.3) m s-1 on February 19/21. Latitudinal variations of the zonal and meridional winds are further compared with the simultaneous VIRTIS data. We discuss temporal variability as well as its statistical significance.

Venus, atmosphere - Atmospheres, dynamics - Spectroscopy

Volume 243, Page 249
2014 November

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Instituto de Astrofísica e Ciências do Espaço Universidade do Porto Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia
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