A new study has found that its magnetic field may be about to undergo a change.
A new study has found that the Earth’s sun may about to have a big change in its magnetic field.
While the shift would be gradual, it would have huge ramifications for how we understand the evolution of stars in general, according to a UPI report.
Researchers have been able to determine the age of stars by modeling the slowing rotations of solar masses, a dating process called gyrochronology. But now new research from the Carnegie Institution for Science say that the old gyrochronology models are off and may need to be recalibrated as scientists were surprised to find that aging stars aren’t slowing down as much as they thought they would.
The solar winds that are discharged from the sun and smash into our Earth’s magnetic field actually acts as a braking system on the rotational spin of a star, but not as much as had been previously thought. Also, a change in the deceleration usually precedes a shift in the magnetic field of the star, and ours could be due for such a shift.
By studying the shift of our sun and its electromagnetic tendencies, scientists can work out a timescale for any changes. This could lead to recalibrations of gyrochronological models.
Jennifer van Saders, a Carnegie astronomer, said in a statement that the “ability to determine a star’s age is important for improving our understanding of the life cycles of astronomical systems — for cataloging how the star and the objects near it have changed through history and for predicting how they might change in the future.
“Gyrochronology has the potential to be a very precise method for determining the ages of the average Sun-like star, provided we can get the calibrations correct,” she added.
The findings were published in the journal Nature.