Statistical state dynamics (SSD) has recently been used to provide insight into physical mechanisms underlying turbulence in atmospheres at planetary scale. In these applications statistical quantities are taken as the dynamical variables and the dynamics is typically closed at second order. The SSD perspective allows analytical expression of aspects of the dynamics of turbulence that have well recognized manifestation in both observation and simulation, but lack analytical expression in the dynamics of single realizations of turbulent states. Example applications to the climate of the Earth and outer planets will be presented.
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