Session 5 - Solar Poles Frontier/Exploration

Conveners: Rebecca Centeno (HAO/NCAR), Barbara Thompson (GSFC)

Solar polar fields dominate the large-scale structure of the corona during most of the solar cycle, and seem to be indicators -if not precursors- of the magnetic activity in the next cycle. On the other hand, the large-scale flows at high latitudes play an important role in flux transport dynamos, but are still poorly constrained by observations. Thus, the solar poles are the object of desire of helioseismologists, solar cycle forecasters and flux transport modelers alike. The caveat is that the physical properties at the poles are hard to characterise because of the weak nature of the magnetics fields and the almost unsurmountable projection effects as seen from the Earth’s vantage point. This session will review the advances in the measurement and understanding of solar polar fields and flows, and their connection to the Solar Cycle. It will also explore the benefits that will come from complementing SDO data with other new and existing observatories, in the advent of DKIST, PROBA2 and Solar Orbiter.

Plenary speaker: Sarah Gibson (HAO)