The first time a solar system’s atmosphere absorbs a sunspot is when it’s almost fully illuminated, but for some reason, it doesn’t disappear completely, according to a study by researchers at the Australian National University.
In their paper published online today in Nature, the researchers looked at how much the solar system is getting from the sun.
Using simulations of the solar atmosphere, they found that the total amount of energy entering the solar plasma in the first minute of darkness has a much smaller influence on the solar wind than what we think.
In the simulations, the solar winds are only about a quarter of the total energy released during the day and the second minute of the night, and only a third during the morning and evening.
“In terms of the day-night cycle, we see the day’s activity is mostly related to the sunspot cycle, with a few days being dominated by sunspots, but this is not the case in the night-time, when there is very little activity,” Associate Professor Matt Jones said.
“For the solar-system model, the total solar energy entering our solar system at the first few minutes of darkness is more like the sun’s activity during a day or night cycle than a typical solar-synchronous cycle.”
The sunspot activity and solar wind are about half of the amount that enters our system from the atmosphere, but these are very small contributions compared to the energy absorbed by the sun during the night.
“What’s more, it seems that the sunspot cycle has an impact on the sun, with its activity on the ground increasing as the sun gets closer to the earth.”
Sunspots are the main source of energy from the solar surface and the moon is also very important, but the sun has its own cycle of activity, which is related to Earth’s rotation,” Associate Associate Professor Jones said.”
The sun has a very large influence on Earth’s atmosphere, so it’s not a coincidence that the day is dominated by the activity of the suns activity at night.
“As you get closer to a sunspotted star, the amount of solar activity becomes less, which leads to more activity on Earth.”
The paper is a follow-up to the work of a group of researchers from the University of Sydney, University of Melbourne, Curtin University, University in Sydney and the Australian Research Council, who looked at the sun in detail using the Australian Atmospheric Environment Model.
“Our solar model allows us to model the atmosphere of the Solar System with great accuracy, so we can look at the effects of solar irradiance on the planet,” Associate professor Jones said, adding that the models are “very good at simulating the dynamics of the Sun and Earth.”
“But our modelling is very sensitive to things like clouds and clouds cover, so in a sense, it’s like looking at a cloud on an aircraft, rather than looking at an actual cloud.”
He said that the model provides a “good starting point for studying the influence of the atmosphere on the Sun”.
“But we have to do a better job of understanding how the solar radiation is distributed in the atmosphere and what is happening to the atmosphere in relation to the Sun, which requires a more sophisticated model,” Associate Prof Jones said., but the models can’t provide a full picture.
“What’s interesting is that we can model the Sun’s activity at different times of day, but we can’t actually understand how much of that activity is generated during the sun hours,” Associate Dr Jones said..
“That’s where the model comes in.”
The models are built to simulate the atmosphere at different depths and temperatures, and the scientists also need to account for cloud cover, clouds and the atmosphere itself.
“We have to make a number of assumptions about the atmosphere,” AssociateProfessor Jones said of the model.
“One of the biggest assumptions is that the Sun will be active for a given amount of time, but not so much that it’s causing us to see much of the activity from the Sun.”
Another assumption is that clouds are constant, but that the amount we see from the clouds changes as the Sun gets closer.
“He added that they need to take into account that the atmosphere is dynamic, that it changes as a result of weather and that “there are lots of small variations that can occur in the behaviour of the Earth”.”
It’s like a computer that’s getting a lot of heat from a very small amount of electricity.
“This model is not perfect, and it doesn´t give us a complete picture of the planet, but it’s very good.”
The research is supported by the Australian Science Foundation and the National Research Council of Australia.