Habitable Zones & Global Climate

Stellar Magnetism, Winds and Their Effects on Planetary Environments

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
August 15, 2016
Filed under
Stellar Magnetism, Winds and Their Effects on Planetary Environments

I review some recent works on magnetism of cool, main-sequence stars, their winds and potential impact on surrounding exoplanets. The winds of these stars are very tenuous and persist during their lifetime.

Although carrying just a small fraction of the stellar mass, these magnetic winds carry away angular momentum, thus regulating the rotation of the star. Since cool stars are likely to be surrounded by planets, understanding the host star winds and magnetism is a key step towards characterisation of exoplanetary environments. As rotation and activity are intimately related, the spin down of stars leads to a decrease in stellar activity with age. As a consequence, as stars age, a decrease in high-energy (X-ray, extreme ultraviolet) irradiation is observed, which can affect the evaporation of exoplanetary atmospheres and, thus, also altering exoplanetary evolution.

A. A. Vidotto (Trinity College Dublin)
(Submitted on 12 Aug 2016)

Comments: 6 pages, 5 figures. To appear in the proceedings of “The 19th Cambridge Workshop on Cool Stars, Stellar Systems, and the Sun” (ed. G. A. Feiden), Uppsala, Sweden, 06-10 June 2016. This article is based on my invited plenary talk
Subjects: Solar and Stellar Astrophysics (astro-ph.SR); Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)
DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.60058
Cite as: arXiv:1608.03833 [astro-ph.SR] (or arXiv:1608.03833v1 [astro-ph.SR] for this version)
Submission history
From: Aline Vidotto
[v1] Fri, 12 Aug 2016 15:57:48 GMT (6531kb,D)

Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA Space Station Payload manager/space biologist, Away Teams, Journalist, Lapsed climber, Synaesthete, Na’Vi-Jedi-Freman-Buddhist-mix, ASL, Devon Island and Everest Base Camp veteran, (he/him) 🖖🏻