Estimate of Jupiter's deep zonal-wind profile from Shoemaker-Levy 9 data and Arnol'd's second stability criterion.
A number of one- and two-layer atmospheric models have been applied to the study of Jupiter's tropospheric circulations over the past two decades in an effort to characterize the basic-state properties of the zonal winds and to study the influence these winds have on the dynamics of long-lived vortices like the Great Red Spot. By singling out the basic state that corresponds to neutral stability with respect to Arnol'd's second stability criterion, as motivated by the results of a vortex-tube stretching analysis of the Voyager wind data and by fixing the stratification parameter using the c = 454 ± 20 msec -1 gravity wave speed determined from the Shoemaker—Levy 9 impacts, we arrive at a unique model with no free parameters. The speed and direction of the zonal wind as a function of latitude for the model's lower layer is thus determined, which roughly indicates the circulation in Jupiter's interior below the water clouds. Predictions are that the westward jets change little with depth but that the eastward jets become stronger by 50-100%.