The solar dynamo begins near the surface. (

These scientists studied the Sun to understand how it creates its magnetic field. They found that a specific pattern of sunspots appearing and disappearing every 11 years is linked to the movement of magnetic fields near the Sun's surface. Instead of looking deep inside the Sun, they focused on the outer layer called the near-surface shear layer. They discovered that the interaction between the Sun's rotation and its magnetic field causes an instability called the magneto-rotational instability, which is also seen in other systems like accretion disks.

By studying this near-surface instability, the scientists were able to better explain the movement of sunspots and the strength of the Sun's magnetic field. They used computer simulations to confirm their findings and showed that this near-surface phenomenon could help predict the Sun's magnetic cycles and space weather, which can impact Earth's technology. This research provides new insights into how the Sun's magnetic field works and how it affects our planet.

Vasil GM., Lecoanet D., Augustson K., Burns KJ., Oishi JS., Brown BP., Brummell N., Julien K. The solar dynamo begins near the surface. Nature. 2024 May;629(8013):769-772. doi: 10.1038/s41586-024-07315-1. Epub 2024 May 22.

ichini | 3 weeks ago | 0 comments | Reply