Wang, Huiqun, Richardson, Mark I., Toigo, Anthony D., and Newman, Claire E. 2013. "Zonal wavenumber three traveling waves in the northern hemisphere of Mars simulated with a general circulation model." Icarus 223:654-676. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2013.01.004
Observations suggest a strong correlation between curvilinear shaped traveling dust storms (observed in wide angle camera images) and eastward traveling zonal wave number m = 3 waves (observed in thermal data) in the northern mid and high latitudes during the fall and winter. Using the MarsWRF General Circulation Model, we have investigated the seasonality, structure and dynamics of the simulated m = 3 traveling waves and tested the hypothesis that traveling dust storms may enhance m = 3 traveling waves under certain conditions.Our standard simulation using a prescribed "MGS dust scenario" can capture the observed major wave modes and strong near surface temperature variations before and after the northern winter solstice. The same seasonal pattern is also shown by the simulated near surface meridional wind, but not by the normalized surface pressure. The simulated eastward traveling 1.4 < T < 10 sol m = 3 waves are confined near the surface in terms of the temperature perturbation, EP flux and eddy available potential energy, and they extend higher in terms of the eddy winds and eddy kinetic energy. The signature of the simulated m = 3 traveling waves is stronger in the near surface meridional wind than in the near surface temperature field.Compared with the standard simulation, our test simulations show that the prescribed m = 3 traveling dust blobs can enhance the simulated m = 3 traveling waves during the pre- and post-solstice periods when traveling dust storms are frequently observed in images, and that they have negligible effect during the northern winter solstice period when traveling dust storms are absent. The enhancement is even greater in our simulation when dust is concentrated closer to the surface. Our simulations also suggest that dust within the 45-75°N band is most effective at enhancing the simulated m = 3 traveling waves.There are multiple factors influencing the strength of the simulated m = 3 traveling waves. Among those, our study suggests that weaker near surface static stability, larger near surface baroclinic parameter, and wave-form dust forcing for latitudinally extended dust storms are favorable. Further study is needed to fully understand the importance of these factors and others.