EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 439, Number 2, August IV 2005
Page(s) 749 - 750
Section The Sun
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20053459

A&A 439, 749-750 (2005)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20053459

Research Note

Is there a phase constraint for solar dynamo models?

M. Schüssler

Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, Max-Planck-Str. 2, 37191 Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany
    e-mail: schuessler@mps.mpg.de

(Received 18 May 2005 / Accepted 24 May 2005)

The spatio-temporal relationship between the sign of the observed radial component of the magnetic field at the solar surface and the sign of the toroidal field as inferred from Hale's polarity rules for sunspots is usually interpreted as signifying the phase relation between the poloidal and the toroidal magnetic field components involved in the solar dynamo process. This has been taken as a constraint for models of the solar dynamo. This note draws attention to the fact that the observed phase relation is naturally and inevitably produced by the emergence of tilted bipolar regions and flux transport through surface flows, without any necessity of recourse to the dynamo process. Consequently, there is no constraint on dynamo models resulting from the observed phase relation.

Key words: Sun: magnetic fields -- Sun: activity -- magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) -- magnetic fields

© ESO 2005