University of Oulu

Lockwood, M., Owens, M. J., Yardley, S. L., Virtanen, I. O. I., Yeates, A. R., & Muñoz-Jaramillo, A. (2022). Application of historic datasets to understanding open solar flux and the 20th-century grand solar maximum. 2. Solar observations. Frontiers in Astronomy and Space Sciences, 9, 976444.

Application of historic datasets to understanding open solar flux and the 20th-century grand solar maximum : 2. Solar observations

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Author: Lockwood, Mike1; Owens, Mathew J.1; Yardley, Stephanie L.1,2,3;
Organizations: 1Department of Meteorology, University of Reading, Reading, United Kingdom
2Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC), Donostia, Spain
3Mullard Space Science Laboratory, University College London, Dorking, United Kingdom
4Space Physics and Astronomy Research Unit, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
5Department of Mathematical Sciences, Durham University, Durham, United Kingdom
6Division of Space Science and Engineering, SouthWest Research Institute, Boulder, CO, United Kingdom
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 2.9 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Frontiers Media, 2022
Publish Date: 2023-01-04


We study historic observations of solar activity from the 20th-century rise towards the peak of the Modern Grand Solar Maximum (MGSM) and compare with observations of the decline that has occurred since. The major difference in available solar observations of the rise and of the fall are accurate magnetograms from solar magnetographs: we here use synthetic magnetograms to interpret the rise and employ historic observations of Polar Crown Filaments to test them and verify their use. We show that eclipse images at sunspot minimum reveal the long-term variation of open flux deduced from geomagnetic observations in Paper 1 (Lockwood et al., 2022). We also make use of polar coronal hole fluxes derived from historic white light images of polar faculae, but have to consider the implications of the fact that these facular images do not tell us the polarity of the field. Given this caveat, the agreement between the polar coronal hole fluxes and the values derived from open flux continuity modelling based on sunspot numbers is extremely good. This comparison indicates that one possible solution to the “open flux problem” is open flux within the streamer belt that potential-based modelling of coronal fields from photospheric fields is not capturing. We take a detailed look at the solar cycle at the peak of the MGSM, cycle 19, and show the variation of the polar coronal hole fluxes and the inferred poleward flux surges are predictable from the asymmetries in flux emergence in the two hemispheres with implied transequatorial flux transfer and/or “anti-Hale” (or more general “rogue” active region flux) emergence late in the sunspot cycle.

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Series: Frontiers in astronomy and space sciences
ISSN: 2296-987X
ISSN-E: 2296-987X
ISSN-L: 2296-987X
Volume: 9
Article number: 976444
DOI: 10.3389/fspas.2022.976444
Type of Publication: A2 Review article in a scientific journal
Field of Science: 115 Astronomy and space science
Funding: This work is supported by a number of grants. ML, MO, and SY are supported by consolidated grant number ST/M000885/1 from the United Kingdom Science and Technology Facilities Council (UKRI/STFC) and ML and MO are also funded by the SWIGS Directed Highlight Topic Grant number NE/P016928/1/from the United Kingdom Natural Environment Research Council (UKRI/NERC). AY was supported by UKRI/STFC research grant number ST/S000321/1. IV was supported by the Academy of Finland via the ReSoLVE Centre of Excellence (project no. 307411). The work of IV and AY was also partially supported by the International Space Science Institute (Bern, Switzerland) via International Team 420 on Reconstructing Solar and Heliospheric Magnetic Field Evolution over the Past Century. The work of AM-J was funded by NASA Living with a Star grant NNH15ZDA001N.
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 307411
Detailed Information: 307411 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2022 Lockwood, Owens, Yardley, Virtanen, Yeates and Muñoz-Jaramillo. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.