Doppler images and the underlying dynamo. The case of AF Leporis [SSA]

The (Zeeman-)Doppler imaging studies of solar-type stars very often reveal large high-latitude spots. This also includes F stars that possess relatively shallow convection zones, indicating that the dynamo operating in these stars differs from the solar dynamo. We aim to determine whether mean-field dynamo models of late-F type dwarf stars can reproduce the surface features recovered in Doppler maps. In particular, we wish to test whether the models can reproduce the high-latitude spots observed on some F dwarfs. The photometric inversions and the surface temperature maps of AF Lep were obtained using the Occamian-approach inversion technique. Low signal-to-noise spectroscopic data were improved by applying the least-squares deconvolution method. The locations of strong magnetic flux in the stellar tachocline as well as the surface fields obtained from mean-field dynamo solutions were compared with the observed surface temperature maps. The photometric record of AF Lep reveals both long- and short-term variability. However, the current data set is too short for cycle-length estimates. From the photometry, we have determined the rotation period of the star to be 0.9660+-0.0023 days. The surface temperature maps show a dominant, but evolving, high-latitude (around +65 degrees) spot. Detailed study of the photometry reveals that sometimes the spot coverage varies only marginally over a long time, and at other times it varies rapidly. Of a suite of dynamo models, the model with a radiative interior rotating as fast as the convection zone at the equator delivered the highest compatibility with the obtained Doppler images.

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S. Jarvinen, R. Arlt, T. Hackman, et. al.
Wed, 10 Dec 14

Comments: accepted for publication in Astronomy & Astrophysics