Influence of a coronal envelope as a free boundary to global convective dynamo simulations
1 Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, Justus-von-Liebig-Weg 3, 37077 Göttingen, Germany
2 ReSoLVE Centre of Excellence, Department of Computer Science, Aalto University, PO Box 15400, 00076 Aalto, Finland
3 Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam, An der Sternwarte 16, 11482 Potsdam, Germany
4 NORDITA, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Stockholm University, Roslagstullsbacken 23, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden
5 Department of Astronomy, AlbaNova University Center, Stockholm University, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden
6 JILA and Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences, Box 440, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80303, USA
7 Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, 3665 Discovery Drive, Boulder, CO 80303, USA
Received: 18 March 2015
Accepted: 21 July 2016
Aims. We explore the effects of an outer stably stratified coronal envelope on rotating turbulent convection, differential rotation, and large-scale dynamo action in spherical wedge models of the Sun.
Methods. We solve the compressible magnetohydrodynamic equations in a two-layer model with unstable stratification below the surface, representing the convection zone, and a stably stratified coronal envelope above. The interface represents a free surface. We compare our model to models that have no coronal envelope.
Results. The presence of a coronal envelope is found to modify the Reynolds stress and the Λ effect resulting in a weaker and non-cylindrical differential rotation. This is related to the reduced latitudinal temperature variations that are caused by and dependent on the angular velocity. Some simulations develop a near-surface shear layer that we can relate to a sign change in the meridional Reynolds stress term in the thermal wind balance equation. Furthermore, the presence of a free surface changes the magnetic field evolution since the toroidal field is concentrated closer to the surface. In all simulations, however, the migration direction of the mean magnetic field can be explained by the Parker-Yoshimura rule, which is consistent with earlier findings.
Conclusions. A realistic treatment of the upper boundary in spherical dynamo simulations is crucial for the dynamics of the flow and magnetic field evolution.
Key words: magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) / turbulence / dynamo / Sun: magnetic fields / Sun: rotation / Sun: activity
© ESO, 2016