Scaling Relations for Terrestrial Exoplanet Atmospheres from Baroclinic Criticality

Thaddeus Komacek
The macroturbulent atmospheric circulation of Earth-like planets mediates their equator-to-pole heat transport. For fast-rotating terrestrial planets, baroclinic instabilities in the mid-latitudes lead to turbulent eddies that act to transport heat poleward. In this work, we derive a scaling theory for the equator-to-pole temperature contrast and bulk lapse rate of terrestrial exoplanet atmospheres. This theory is built on the work of Jansen & Ferrari and determines how unstable the atmosphere is to baroclinic instability (the baroclinic...
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