Multiple zonal jets and convective heat transport barriers in a quasi-geostrophic model of planetary cores [CL]

We study rapidly-rotating Boussinesq convection driven by internal heating in a full sphere. We use a numerical model based on the quasi-geostrophic approximation for the velocity field, whereas the temperature field is three-dimensional. This approximation allows us to perform simulations for Ekman numbers down to 1e-8, Prandtl numbers relevant for liquid metals (~0.1) and Reynolds numbers up to 3e4. Persistent zonal flows composed of multiple jets form as a result of the mixing of potential vorticity. For the largest Rayleigh numbers computed, the zonal velocity is larger than the convective velocity despite the presence of boundary friction. The convective structures and the zonal jets widen when the thermal forcing increases. Prograde and retrograde zonal jets are dynamically different: in the prograde jets (which correspond to weak potential vorticity gradients) the convection transports heat efficiently and the mean temperature tends to be homogenised; by contrast, in the cores of the retrograde jets (which correspond to steep gradients of potential vorticity) the dynamics is dominated by the propagation of Rossby waves, resulting in the formation of steep mean temperature gradients and the dominance of conduction in the heat transfer process. Consequently, in quasi-geostrophic systems, the width of the retrograde zonal jets controls the efficiency of the heat transfer.

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C. Guervilly and P. Cardin
Fri, 18 Aug 17

Comments: 25 pages, 13 figues, published in Geophys. J. Int

Field dynamics inference via spectral density estimation [CL]

Stochastic differential equations (SDEs) are of utmost importance in various scientific and industrial areas. They are the natural description of dynamical processes whose precise equations of motion are either not known or too expensive to solve, e.g., when modeling Brownian motion. In some cases, the equations governing the dynamics of a physical system on macroscopic scales occur to be unknown since they typically cannot be deduced from general principles. In this work, we describe how the underlying laws of a stochastic process can be approximated by the spectral density of the corresponding process. Furthermore, we show how the density can be inferred from possibly very noisy and incomplete measurements of the dynamical field. Generally, inverse problems like these can be tackled with the help of Information Field Theory (IFT). For now, we restrict to linear and autonomous processes. Though, this is a non-conceptual limitation that may be omitted in future work. To demonstrate its applicability we employ our reconstruction algorithm on a time-series and spatio-temporal processes.

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P. Frank, T. Steininger and T. Ensslin
Fri, 18 Aug 17

Comments: 12 pages, 9 figures

Space Climate and Space Weather over the past 400 years: 1. The Power input to the Magnetosphere [CL]

Using information on geomagnetic activity, sunspot numbers and cosmogenic isotopes, supported by historic eclipse images and in conjunction with models, it has been possible to reconstruct annual means of solar wind speed and number density and heliospheric magnetic field (HMF) intensity since 1611, when telescopic observations of sunspots began. These models are developed and tuned using data recorded by near-Earth interplanetary spacecraft and by solar magnetograms over the past 53 years. In this paper, we use these reconstructions to quantify power input into the magnetosphere over the past 400 years. For each year, both the annual mean power input is computed and its distribution in daily means. This is possible because the distribution of daily values divided by the annual mean is shown to maintain the same lognormal form with a constant variance. This study is another important step towards the development of a physics-based, long-term climatology of space weather conditions.

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M. Lockwood, M. Owens, L. Barnard, et. al.
Thu, 17 Aug 17

Comments: In press, accepted for publication by J. Space Weather Space Clim. Ms# swsc170035 (accepted version, 28 pages, 2 Tables, 12 Figures)

A combined analysis of PandaX, LUX, and XENON1T experiments within the framework of dark matter effective theory [CL]

Weakly interacting massive particles are a widely well-probed dark matter candidate by the dark matter direct detection experiments. Theoretically, there are a large number of ultraviolet completed models that consist of a weakly interacting massive particle dark matter. The variety of models make the comparison with the direct detection data complicated and often non-trivial. To overcome this, in the non-relativistic limit, the effective theory was developed in the literature which works very well to significantly reduce the complexity of dark matter-nucleon interactions and to better study the nuclear response functions. In the effective theory framework for a spin-1/2 dark matter, we combine three independent likelihood functions from the latest PandaX, LUX, and XENON1T data, and give a joint limit on each effective coupling. The astrophysical uncertainties of the dark matter distribution are also included in the likelihood. We further discuss the isospin violating cases of the interactions. Finally, for both dimension-five and dimension-six effective theories above the electroweak scale, we give updated limits of the new physics mass scales.

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Z. Liu, Y. Su, Y. Tsai, et. al.
Thu, 17 Aug 17

Comments: 31 pages, 10 figures, “code will be available soon in the LikeDM website, this https URL

Colorimetric Calibration of a Digital Camera [CL]

In this paper, we introduce a novel – physico-chemical – approach for calibration of a digital camera chip. This approach utilizes results of measurement of incident light spectra of calibration films of different levels of gray for construction of calibration curve (number of incident photons vs. image pixel intensity) for each camera pixel. We show spectral characteristics of such corrected digital raw image files (a primary camera signal) and demonstrate their suitability for next image processing and analysis.

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R. Rychtarikova, P. Soucek and D. Stys
Thu, 17 Aug 17

Comments: 14 pages, 6 figures

Simple cosmological model with inflation and late times acceleration [CL]

In the framework of polynomial Palatini cosmology, we investigate a simple cosmological homogeneous and isotropic model with matter in the Einstein frame. We show that in this model during cosmic evolution, it appears the early inflation and the accelerating phase of the expansion for the late times. In this frame we obtain the Friedmann equation with matter and dark energy in the form of a scalar field with the potential whose form is determined in a covariant way by the Ricci scalar of the FRW metric. The energy density of matter and dark energy are also parametrized through the Ricci scalar. The early inflation is obtained only for an infinitesimally small fraction of energy density of matter. Between the matter and dark energy, there exists interaction because the dark energy is decaying. For characterization of inflation we calculate the slow roll parameters and the constant roll parameter in terms of the Ricci scalar. We have found a characteristic behaviour of the time dependence of density of dark energy on the cosmic time following the logistic-like curve which interpolates two almost constant value phases. From the required numbers of $N$-folds we have found a bound on model parameter.

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M. Szydlowski and A. Stachowski
Thu, 17 Aug 17

Comments: 8 pages, 10 figures

Damping of an oscillating scalar field indirectly coupled to a thermal bath [CL]

The damping process of a homogeneous oscillating scalar field that indirectly interacts with a thermal bath through a mediator field is investigated over a wide range of model parameters. We consider two types of mediator fields, those that can decay to the thermal bath and those that are individually stable but pair annihilate. The former case has been extensively studied in the literature by treating the damping as a local effect after integrating out the assumed close-to-equilibrium mediator field. The same approach does not apply if the mediator field is stable and freezes out of equilibrium. To account for the latter case, we adopt a non-local description of damping that is only meaningful when we consider full half-oscillations of the field being damped. The damping rates of the oscillating scalar field and the corresponding heating rate of the thermal bath in all bulk parameter regions are calculated in both cases, corroborating previous results in the direct decay case. Using the obtained results, the time it takes for the amplitude of the scalar field to be substantially damped is estimated.

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E. Tanin and E. Stewart
Thu, 17 Aug 17

Comments: 39 pages, 9 figures, 1 table