RASC Regular Meeting
TELUS World of Science
FREE and open to the public.
7:00 PM Pre-meeting mix and mingle.
7:30 PM Guest Speaker
Department of Physics, University of Alberta
Dynamics of Giant Planets: Bands, Spots, and Dynamos
Dr. Heimpel’s main research interest is dynamics of planetary interiors. Planetary dynamos have implications for the dynamical evolution of several of the solar system planets, particularly Mercury, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, as well as exoplanets. Cassini and Hooke described the bands and spots of Jupiter 350 years ago. More recently, cloud tracking observations from Earth and space missions have revealed bands and spots to be strong East-West zonal flows and vortices. A focus of this talk will be to relate the interior structure and dynamics to atmospheric features on Jupiter and Saturn. It will be argued that planetary dynamos, which sustain global magnetic fields, and the large scale structures of the atmospheres of the Jovian planets are intimately coupled.