Status Report

Seasonal Variability of the Daytime and Nighttime Atmospheric Turbulence Experienced by InSight on Mars

By SpaceRef Editor
November 2, 2021
Filed under , ,

The InSight mission, featuring continuous high-frequency high-sensitivity pressure measurements, is in ideal position to study the active atmospheric turbulence of Mars. Data acquired during 1.25 Martian year allows us to study the seasonal evolution of turbulence and its diurnal cycle. We investigate vortices (abrupt pressure drops), local turbulence (frequency range 0.01-2 Hz) and non-local turbulence often caused by convection cells and plumes (frequency range 0.002-0.01 Hz).

Contrary to non-local turbulence, local turbulence is strongly sensitive at all local times and seasons to the ambient wind. We report many remarkable events with the arrival of northern autumn at the InSight landing site: a spectacular burst of daytime vortices, the appearance of nighttime vortices, and the development of nighttime local turbulence as intense as its daytime counterpart. Nighttime turbulence at this dusty season appears as a result of the combination of a stronger low-level jet, producing shear-driven turbulence, and a weaker stability.

Comments: 15 pages, 5 figures, revised version of the manuscript submitted to GRL

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Atmospheric and Oceanic Physics (

Cite as: arXiv:2110.06113 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2110.06113v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)

Submission history

From: Audrey Chatain Dr

[v1] Tue, 12 Oct 2021 15:58:43 UTC (2,265 KB)

SpaceRef staff editor.