Saturday, October 25, 2008

Singing Sun

Acoustic Stars

Three kinds of waves are looked for by helioseismologists: acoustic waves, for which pressure is the restoring force (these waves generate p modes), gravity waves for which buoyancy is the restoring force (these waves generate g modes), and surface gravity waves (these waves generate f modes).Helioseismologists use both standing wave patterns and propagating waves in their research.

Acoustic waves are bouncing back and forth in the sun creating what we might call a star song. We have studies these kind of waves in the Sun for ages and now, with COROT, we can do the same with other stars learning a lot about their physics.

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