Mr Stephen Thomson 


  • 2011-Present : PhD, DAMTP, University of Cambridge
  • 2007-2011: MPhys, University of Oxford


Stephen is a member of the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, in both the Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics and the Atmospheric Dynamics research groups. His supervisor is Professor Michael McIntyre.

Stephen's research interests lie in trying to understand more about the dynamics of Jupiter's weather layer, specifically the structure of the east-west winds, or 'zonal jets', observed on Jupiter. He also has interests in the atmosphere of Mars, particularly in its polar vortex, and how this vortex differs from other polar vortices found elsewhere in the solar system.

Jupiter paper submitted to JAS

We have recently submitted a paper detailing the main results from our new idealised model of Jupiter's jets. The preprint is available for download here. The model has the ability to produce both statistically steady states without the need for a large-scale friction, and straight jets that are stable via Arnol'd's second stability criterion. The apparent importance of vortex migration, as suggested for Jupiter by Ingersoll et al 2000, is a new and interesting result. The supplemental movie files and the model code used for this paper are available here. Any comments or questions would be most welcome.


Publications and Proceedings

  • Thomson, S.I.,  McIntyre, M.E., Jupiter’s unearthly jets: a new turbulent model exhibiting statistical steadiness without large-scale dissipation. (Submitted). PDF
  • Mitchell, D.M., Montabone, L., Thomson, S.I., Read, P.L., "Polar Vortices on Earth and Mars: A Comparative Study of the Climatology and Variability from Reanalyses", QJRMS, 2014. PDF
  • Thomson, S.I., McIntyre, M.E., Jupiter's Unearthly Jets: a new idealised model. EPSC Abstracts Vol. 8, EPSC2013-286, 2013. PDF
  • Montabone, L., Mitchell, D.M., Thomson, S.I., Read, P.L., Polar Vortices on Mars and Earth from Atmospheric Reanalyses EPSC Abstracts Vol. 8, EPSC2013-877, 2013. PDF
  • Montabone, L., Thomson, S.I., Wilson, R. J., Forget, F., Lewis, S., Millour, E., Using Reconstructed Dust Climatology to Study the Impacts of Martian Dust Storms on Dynamics EPSC Abstracts Vol. 8, EPSC2013-963, 2013. PDF


  • Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society
  • Student member of the Royal Meteorological Society
  • Student member of the American Geophysical Union
  • Member of Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge
  • Alumnus of New College, Oxford