Formation of polar starspots through meridional circulation

V. Holzwarth, D. H. Mackay, M. Jardine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


To explain the observed intermingling of polarities in the magnetic field distributions of rapidly rotating stars, surface magnetic flux transport models demand the presence of fast meridional flows. We combine simulations of the pre-eruptive and post-eruptive magnetic flux transport in cool stars to investigate the influence of a fast meridional circulation on the latitudinal eruption pattern of magnetic flux tubes and on the polar magnetic field properties. Magnetic flux tubes rising through the convection zone experience an enhanced latitude-dependent poleward deflection through meridional flows, which renders the wings of stellar butterfly diagrams convex. The larger amount of magnetic flux emerging at higher latitudes supports the intermingling of opposite polarities of polar magnetic fields and yields magnetic flux densities in the polar regions about 20% higher than in the case disregarding the pre-eruptive deflection. Taking the pre-eruptive evolution of magnetic flux into account therefore eases the need for the fast meridional flows predicted by previous investigations. (C) 2007 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1108-1110
Number of pages3
JournalAstronomische Nachrichten
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007


  • stars : activity
  • stars : imaging
  • stars : late-type
  • stars : magnetic fields
  • starspots


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