This book reviews the approach to the kinetic simulation of nonequilibrium processes in the planetary atmospheres which the authors developed and have dealt with since the 1970s. The results of this study, which are focused on the nonequilibrium collisional processes in the atmospheres of planets and comets, are thoroughly reviewed and discussed. Many specific problems of atmospheric modeling, involving numerical simulation of aeronomic processes, are addressed and compared with the available experimental data. The kinetic approach proved to be especially effective in modelling the interaction of the incident shortwave solar radiation with the rarefied gas of planetary upper atmospheres. It involves various processes of photolysis, energetic particle impacts, and numerous accompanying chemical reactions. The underlying mathematical treatment is based on the stochastic approach for the solution of the Boltzmann-type equation and implies the development of efficient algorithms for its computer simulation. New or upgraded methods and algorithms for addressing the relevant problems of non-equilibrium gas kinetics were developed and successfully implemented for the simulation of a wide range of aeronomical processes. This book is intended for professional scholars and graduate students in space sciences, planetary astronomy and aeronomy and will also be useful to some target groups dealing with mechanics, gas dynamics, and computer modeling of versatile physical processes and who wish to expand the areas of their immediate interests.
1. Introduction. 2. Planetary and Cometary Atmospheres: An Aeronomy Approach. 3. Rarefied Gas of Planetary and Cometary Atmospheres as a Nonequilibrium Physical and Chemical System. 4. Methods of Mathematical Modeling of Rarefied Gases in Planetary and Cometary Atmospheres. 5. Kinetic Approach to the Modeling of Collisional Processes in a Rarefied Gas. 6. Numerical Kinetic Models for Aeronomy Applications. 7. Production of Nonthermal Particles by Electromagnetic and Corpuscular Solar Radiation. 8. Nonequilibrium Chemistry of Odd Nitrogen in the Earth's Thermosphere. 9. Role of Nonlinear Processes in the Formation of Neutral Planetary Coronas. 10. Nonthermal Particles in the Jovian Atmosphere. 11. Transition Regions in Cometary Atmospheres. Conclusions. References.
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