Aidi Zhang

I am a Ph.D. student working on the three-dimensional structure and the longevity of the Great Red Spot. My academic journey began at Sun Yat-Sen University, where I earned a B.Eng. degree in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics. Throughout my undergraduate years, I had the chance to explore a range of research subjects. I delved into optimizing methods for detecting structural damage and also immersed myself in simulating two-dimensional Rayleigh-Bénard convection. This latter experience notably sparked my interest in computational fluid dynamics. Parallel to my academic pursuits, I’ve enjoyed stargazing as a hobby since my middle school days. Fortunately, my path led me to the CFD lab at UC Berkeley, where my two passions seamlessly fusion into research projects that perfectly align with my interests.

My current research interest revolves around the application of fluid dynamics techniques to unravel the underlying physics in geophysical and astrophysical challenges. For instance, consider the Great Red Spot (GRS) on Jupiter – a persistent anticyclone within its atmosphere. I have developed our group’s home-grown pseudo-spectral-method-based code to handle the complexities of Jupiter’s atmosphere. This encompasses its notable compressibility (referred to as anelastic flow in fluid terminology) and encompasses phenomena that span a broad range of timescales from minutes to days. I have been using this versatile simulation package to simulate the GRS immersed by an observation-based Jovian atmosphere.

Outside of academic research, I enjoy hiking and photography. My camera often points toward the sky, capturing some pretty cool astronomy stuff. There’s something magical about those celestial moments. Let me share a couple of photos with you. First up, we have the Venus transit on June 6th, 2012, snapped in Guangzhou, China. The second shot is from the total solar eclipse on August 17th, 2017, taken in Madras, Oregon. Those were definitely some amazing sights. I’ve set my sights on catching another Venus transit, which is conveniently scheduled for the year 2117. So, you know, as long as I find the secret to living for another century, I’ll be there with my camera! 😉


For more information, please visit my personal site.



  1. Zhang, Aidi, and Philip Marcus. “Longevity of Stratified Anticyclones with Thermal Dissipation and Cyclones with Viscous Dissipation and Their Relevance to Jupiter.” APS Division of Fluid Dynamics Meeting Abstracts. 2021.
  2. Zhang, A. and Marcus, P., 2019. How the Great Red Spot of Jupiter Stays Alive while Losing Energy through Viscous and Radiative Dissipation. Bulletin of the American Physical Society.
  3. Marcus, Philip, and Aidi Zhang. “Vertical Aspect Ratios and Longevities of Complex Vortices and the Application to GFD Flows and Astrophysical Vortices.” Bulletin of the American Physical Society 66 (2021).
  4. Marcus, Philip S., et al. “On the Shedding of Jupiter’s Red Flakes.” AGU Fall Meeting Abstracts. Vol. 2019. 2019.
  5. Marcus, Philip, et al. “The Shedding of Jupiter’s Red Flakes Does Not Mean It Is Dying.” APS Division of Fluid Dynamics Meeting Abstracts. 2019.
  6. YIN, Z., ZHANG, A., 2017. Structure damage detection based on improved big bang-bigcrunch algorithm. Acta Scientiarum Naturalium Universitatis Sunyatseni, (6), p.16.