Mars reveals similar, yet also rather different, atmospheric circulation patterns compared to those on Earth. In both atmospheres, solar differential heating drives global Hadley circulation cells. However during solstice on Mars, its Hadley cells are hemispherically asymmetric: an intense, deep, cross-hemisphere single cell dominates with rising motion in the summer hemisphere and sinking motion in the winter hemisphere. Both planets also exhibit thermally indirect (i.e., eddy-driven) Ferrel circulation cells in middle and high latitudes. In addition, Earth and Mars exhibit distinctive large-scale orography and, in a broadly defined context, continentality. For Mars northern midlatitudes, Tharsis in the western hemisphere, and Arabia Terra and Elysium in the eastern hemisphere, are the primary large-scale topographic features. In the southern-midlatitudes, Tharsis and Argyre in the western hemisphere, and Hellas in the eastern hemisphere are the key topographic features which can influence large-scale circulation patterns. Such underlying orographic complexes not only cause significant latitudinal excursions of the seasonal mean westerly circumnavigating polar vortex but also significantly modulate the intensity and preferred geographic regions of traveling baroclinic weather systems.
International Conference on Mars; Jul 14, 2014 - Jul 18, 2014; Pasadena, CA; United States