Report

Explaining the Latitudinal Distribution of Sunspots with Deep Meridional Flow

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  31 May 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5573, pp. 1671-1673
DOI: 10.1126/science.1070955

You are currently viewing the abstract.

View Full Text

Log in to view the full text

Log in through your institution

Log in through your institution

Abstract

Sunspots, dark magnetic regions occurring at low latitudes on the Sun's surface, are tracers of the magnetic field generated by the dynamo mechanism. Recent solar dynamo models, which use the helioseismically determined solar rotation, indicate that sunspots should form at high latitudes, contrary to observations. We present a dynamo model with the correct latitudinal distribution of sunspots and demonstrate that this requires a meridional flow of material that penetrates deeper than hitherto believed, into the stable layers below the convection zone. Such a deep material flow may have important implications for turbulent convection and elemental abundance in the Sun and similar stars.

View Full Text