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The meridional distribution of CO in Saturn’s stratosphere from SMA and ALMA mapping observations

Presentation #325.06 in the session Origin and Evolution of Giant Planet Systems I (Poster)

Published onOct 23, 2023
The meridional distribution of CO in Saturn’s stratosphere from SMA and ALMA mapping observations

In December 2010, a major storm appeared in Saturn’s troposphere at approximately 40°N latitude. Such storms occur every 30 years, which corresponds approximately to the orbital period of the planet. This storm produced a hot vortex in Saturn’s stratosphere that persisted for about 3 years. We performed mapping observations of CO in Saturn’s stratosphere with the Submillimeter Array (SMA) in March 2010, i.e. before the onset of the storm, to establish its meridional distribution. We also mapped CO with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in January 2012, while the hot stratospheric vortex was still active, to check whether the storm induced changes in its abundance. In this paper, we will present our observations and discuss the implications of our results regarding the distribution and external source of CO in Saturn’s atmosphere.

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