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  using computers to study the Sun

computer models of the Sun

 

Klaus

Hello, I'm Klaus. I use physics, mathematics and computers to try and explain the observations of the solar atmosphere made from SOHO and other satellites.

 

I create what we call 'models' of the Sun. They are not models made of wood or plastic, but are just a load of numbers describing, for example, the Sun's temperature, density, or magnetic field. These numbers are my prediction of what I expect to see on the Sun. Since a table of numbers is not very easy to interpret, the best way of looking at my model Suns is to turn the numbers into images and movies.

 

Here are some examples of computer models of different solar features.

 

Suns Magnetic FieldThis shows a calculation of the magnetic field for the whole Sun based on the measurements of the magnetic field on the surface.


 

Credit: simulation by Thomas Wiegelmann

You can see more movies in our Gallery [Movie file 1mb or more - High quality]
             
             
Magnetic field in an active region emerging from beneath the surface of the Sun  
You can see more movies in our Gallery [Movie file 1mb or more - High quality]
     

Here is a calculation of the magnetic field in an active region emerging from beneath the surface of the Sun. The simulation shows the temperature rising when the new magnetic field merges with the magnetic field that is already there in the solar corona.

     
     
You can see more movies in our Gallery   [Movie file 1mb or more - High quality]
     

This image and the movie show calculations of the possible magnetic field in a sunspot anchored beneath the surface of the Sun and moving around in the solar atmosphere like a tree blowing in the wind.

  Emerging Flux
Credit: Simulation by Oskar Steiner
     
     

 

You can see more movies in our Gallery   [Movie file 1mb or more - High quality]
 

This is what we think is happening underneath a sunspot. The simulations show the temperature (red is hot and blue is cool) and also the way we think that the plasma flows (the convection patterns).

 

         
 

All of these 'solar models' require three main ingredients :
mathematics, physics and a computer.

   

 

   
 
 

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