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Amazing mystery of Martian dust devil - VIDEO PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 20 December 2014 15:20

According to a study of the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) to speed up the rotation of the Martian dust devil requires a stronger updraft than to create such a vortex on Earth.

The first results of this study by the Department of Atmospheric Sciences University of Alabama presented at today's presentation at the next meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco.

"For the formation of a dust devil on Mars requires convection, strong updraft" - said Bruce Williams, a graduate student in atmospheric sciences. "We looked at the relationship between the convection and surface turbulence in order to find the active point at which there is sufficient upward flow to overcome the low-altitude wind and turbulence. On Mars, the process created a whirlwind, more easily disturbed frictional dissipation - turbulence and wind on the surface - requires twice convective upward flow than on the earth. "

Williams and assistant professor of atmospheric sciences Udeysankar Nair sought active point of the dust devil by combining these studies of Australian dust devils with meteorological observations collected during the mission Viking Lander. They used data and one-dimensional model of the planetary boundary layer of Mars to find the relation between the thresholds convection and surface friction velocity, which define the conditions conducive to the formation of dust devils.

On Mars, dust vortices sometimes grow to the size of terrestrial tornado funnel with more than 100 meters wide and rises 12 km above the surface of the planet.

Williams and Nair are trying to establish the effect of dust devils, which they have to lift the dust in the Martian atmosphere. Martian dust in the air and radiation exposure are important regulators of the planet's climate.

"Martian air is so rarefied, dust has a greater impact on the transfer of energy in the atmosphere and on the surface than it does in a dense atmosphere of the Earth," - said Nair. Martian dust in the air cools the surface during the day and radiates long-wave radiation, which warms the surface at night.


НАЖМИТЕ ЗДЕСЬ ДЛЯ ПРОСМОТРА ВСЕГО СПИСКА НОВОСТЕЙ О НЕОБЫЧНЫХ ЯВЛЕНИЯХ>>>

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