AAS 200th meeting, Albuquerque, NM, June 2002
Session 4. Helioseismology and the Solar Interior
Display, Monday, June 3, 2002, 9:20am-6:30pm, SW Exhibit Hall

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[4.19] Fluid Dynamic Explanation of Sunspots, Pores, Supergranulation, and their Relationship to the Solar Cycle

R. E. Falco (SET Enterprises, Inc.)

The morphology and dynamics of many Photospheric events can be explained using the fluid mechanics of turbulent flow/shear layer interactions. With the recent discovery of a sub Photospheric shear layer from helioseismic studies, it can be shown that sunspots may be the result of the interaction of turbulent coherent motions with this shear layer. Cooler temperatures and the magnetic fields of sunspots are a consequence of the rapidly expanding downflows these coherent motion/shear layer interactions produce. The sudden deceleration of these flows results in waves being sent back up through the spots, and the formation of the penumbra.

The solar cycle is seen as a consequence of the stability of these interactions, which is critically dependent on the perturbations produced in the shear layer by the torsional oscillations. The ubiquity of pores follows from the fact that most coherent motion/shear layer interactions result in the rapid destruction of the induced downflows (leaving behind just the beginnings of the process) when the interactions lead to instability of the causal coherent motions. The preponderance of sunspot formations below 40 degrees latitude follows from these stability considerations. Supergranulation is seen as the overall footprint of these coherent motion/shear layer interactions, which is imprinted on the region between the shear layer and the Photosphere whether the interactions are stable or not. Recent helioseismic results of the flow field under a sunspot are compared favorably with the structure of these turbulent coherent motion/shear layer interactions.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: bfalco@setgame.com

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.