Low- and high-order gravitational harmonics of rigidly rotating Jupiter
Universität Rostock, Institut für Physik, 18051 Rostock, Germany
Received: 11 July 2017
Accepted: 19 August 2017
The Juno Orbiter has provided improved estimates of the even gravitational harmonics J2 to J8 of Jupiter. To compute higher-order moments, new methods such as the concentric Maclaurin spheroids (CMS) method have been developed, which surpass the commonly used theory of figures (ToF) method in accuracy. This progress raises the question whether ToF can still provide a useful service for deriving the internal structure of giant planets in the solar system. In this paper, I apply both the ToF and the CMS method to compare results for polytropic Jupiter and for the physical equation of state H/He-REOS.3-based models. An accuracy in the computed values of J2 and J4 of 0.1% is found to be sufficient in order to obtain the core mass safely within 0.5 M⊕ numerical accuracy and the atmospheric metallicity within about 0.0004. ToF to the fourth order provides that accuracy, while ToF to the third order does not for J4. Furthermore, I find that the assumption of rigid rotation yields J6 and J8 values in agreement with the current Juno estimates, and that higher-order terms (J10 to J18) deviate by about 10% from predictions by polytropic models. This work suggests that ToF 4 can still be applied to infer the deep internal structure of giant planets, and that the zonal winds on Jupiter reach less deep than 0.9 RJ.
Key words: planets and satellites: individual: Jupiter / planets and satellites: interiors
© ESO, 2017