The martian planetary boundary layer

Read, Peter L.; Galerpin, Boris; Larsen, Soren E.; Lewis, Stephen; Maattanen, Anni; Petrosyan, Arakel; Renno, Nilton; Savijarvi, Hannu; Siili, Tero; Spiga, Aymeric; Toigo, Anthony and Vazquez, Luis (2017). The martian planetary boundary layer. In: Haberle, Robert M.; Clancy, R. Todd; Forget, Francois; Smith, Michael D. and Zurek, Richard W. eds. The Atmosphere and Climate of Mars. Cambridge Planetary Science. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 172–202.




The Martian planetary boundary layer (PBL) consists of the layers of the atmosphere closest to the surface, within which interactions between the atmosphere and the surface itself are dominant. In general, this represents the lowest 1-10 km of the atmosphere, within which surface-driven intense convection may take place, with convective plumes and vortices rising to heights in excess of 5-10 km during the day (Thomas and Gierasch, 1985; Haberle et al., 1993b; Larsen et al., 2002; Balme and Greeley, 2006; Hinson et al., 2008). At night, convection is inhibited and radiative cooling produces a stably-stratified layer at the surface, and the PBL reduces to a shallow layer forced by mechanical turbulence at the bottom of the stable layer. It is therefore a highly dynamic and variable region of the atmosphere at virtually all locations on Mars, with additional variability induced by interactions with local surface topography.

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