Theoretical seismology in 3D: nonlinear simulations of internal gravity waves in solar-like stars
L. Alvan, A. S. Brun and S. Mathis
Laboratoire AIM Paris-Saclay, CEA/DSM – CNRS – Université Paris Diderot, IRFU/SAp Centre de Saclay, 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette, France
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Received: 14 December 2013
Accepted: 13 March 2014
Context. Internal gravity waves (IGWs) are studied for their impact on the angular momentum transport in stellar radiation zones and the information they provide about the structure and dynamics of deep stellar interiors. We present the first 3D nonlinear numerical simulations of IGWs excitation and propagation in a solar-like star.
Aims. The aim is to study the behavior of waves in a realistic 3D nonlinear time-dependent model of the Sun and to characterize their properties.
Methods. We compare our results with theoretical and 1D predictions. It allows us to point out the complementarity between theory and simulation and to highlight the convenience, but also the limits, of the asymptotic and linear theories.
Results. We show that a rich spectrum of IGWs is excited by the convection, representing about 0.4% of the total solar luminosity. We study the spatial and temporal properties of this spectrum, the effect of thermal damping, and nonlinear interactions between waves. We give quantitative results for the modes’ frequencies, evolution with time and rotational splitting, and we discuss the amplitude of IGWs considering different regimes of parameters.
Conclusions. This work points out the importance of high-performance simulation for its complementarity with observation and theory. It opens a large field of investigation concerning IGWs propagating nonlinearly in 3D spherical structures. The extension of this work to other types of stars, with different masses, structures, and rotation rates will lead to a deeper and more accurate comprehension of IGWs in stars.
Key words: convection / hydrodynamics / turbulence / waves / stars: interiors / Sun: interior
© ESO, 2014