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Wednesday 20 Apr 2022Stratospheric oscillations on tidally locked exoplanets

Maureen Cohen -

4th Floor physics + remote 14:00-15:00

3-D general circulation models allow us to simulate the atmospheric dynamics of exoplanets and their impact on observations and habitability. We used the Met Office Unified Model to explore a phenomenon analogous to Earth’s quasi-biennial oscillation in a simulation of Proxima Centauri b in a tidally locked orbital configuration. Tidal locking leads to a general circulation which creates zonal asymmetries in the structure and timing of the oscillation. In addition, the magnitude of the eastward and westward zonal winds and of the water vapour oscillation in the stratosphere are much greater than on Earth, which may have implications for observations of planets that could support a QBO-like oscillation.

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