Stellar evidence that the solar dynamo may be in transition

AMS Citation:
Metcalfe, T. S., R. Egeland, and J. Van Saders, 2016: Stellar evidence that the solar dynamo may be in transition. The Astrophysical Journal Letters, 826, L2, doi:10.3847/2041-8205/826/1/L2.
Date:2016-07-13
Resource Type:article
Title:Stellar evidence that the solar dynamo may be in transition
Abstract: Precise photometry from the Kepler space telescope allows not only the measurement of rotation in solar-type field stars, but also the determination of reliable masses and ages from asteroseismology. These critical data have recently provided the first opportunity to calibrate rotation–age relations for stars older than the Sun. The evolutionary picture that emerges is surprising: beyond middle-age the efficiency of magnetic braking is dramatically reduced, implying a fundamental change in angular momentum loss beyond a critical Rossby number (Ro ~ 2). We compile published chromospheric activity measurements for the sample of Kepler asteroseismic targets that were used to establish the new rotation-age relations. We use these data along with a sample of well-characterized solar analogs from the Mount Wilson HK survey to develop a qualitative scenario connecting the evolution of chromospheric activity to a fundamental shift in the character of differential rotation. We conclude that the Sun may be in a transitional evolutionary phase, and that its magnetic cycle might represent a special case of stellar dynamo theory.
Peer Review:Refereed
Copyright Information:Copyright 2016 the American Astronomical Society.
OpenSky citable URL: ark:/85065/d7tb18jw
Publisher's Version: 10.3847/2041-8205/826/1/L2
Author(s):
  • Travis Metcalfe
  • Ricky Egeland - NCAR/UCAR
  • Jennifer van Saders
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