Volume 651, July 2021
|Number of page(s)||17|
|Published online||13 July 2021|
Star-in-a-box simulations of fully convective stars
Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Institut für Astrophysik, Friedrich-Hund-Platz 1, 37077 Göttingen, Germany
2 Nordita, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Stockholm University, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden
Accepted: 11 April 2021
Context. Main-sequence late-type stars with masses of less than 0.35 M⊙ are fully convective.
Aims. The goal is to study convection, differential rotation, and dynamos as functions of rotation in fully convective stars.
Methods. Three-dimensional hydrodynamic and magnetohydrodynamic numerical simulations with a star-in-a-box model, in which a spherical star is immersed inside of a Cartesian cube, are used. The model corresponds to a 0.2 M⊙ main-sequence M5 dwarf. A range of rotation periods (Prot) between 4.3 and 430 d is explored.
Results. The slowly rotating model with Prot = 430 days produces anti-solar differential rotation with a slow equator and fast poles, along with predominantly axisymmetric quasi-steady large-scale magnetic fields. For intermediate rotation (Prot = 144 and 43 days) the differential rotation is solar-like (fast equator, slow poles), and the large-scale magnetic fields are mostly axisymmetric and either quasi-stationary or cyclic. The latter occurs in a similar parameter regime as in other numerical studies in spherical shells, and the cycle period is similar to observed cycles in fully convective stars with rotation periods of roughly 100 days. In the rapid rotation regime the differential rotation is weak and the large-scale magnetic fields are increasingly non-axisymmetric with a dominating m = 1 mode. This large-scale non-axisymmetric field also exhibits azimuthal dynamo waves.
Conclusions. The results of the star-in-a-box models agree with simulations of partially convective late-type stars in spherical shells in that the transitions in differential rotation and dynamo regimes occur at similar rotational regimes in terms of the Coriolis (inverse Rossby) number. This similarity between partially and fully convective stars suggests that the processes generating differential rotation and large-scale magnetism are insensitive to the geometry of the star.
Key words: stars: magnetic field / dynamo / magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) / convection / turbulence
© ESO 2021
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