Why the composition of the sun varies


About 17 years ago, J. Martin Laming, an astrophysicist at the US Naval Research Laboratory, theorized why the chemical composition of the Sun’s thin outermost layer differs from that at the bottom.

His theory was recently validated by combined observations of the Sun’s magnetic waves from Earth and from space.

His most recent article in a scientific journal describes how these magnetic waves modify the chemical composition in a completely new process in solar physics or astrophysics, but already known in optical sciences, having been the subject of Nobel prizes awarded to Steven Chu in 1997 and Arthur Ashkin in 2018..

Laming began to explore these phenomena in the mid-1990s and first published the theory in 2004.

“It’s satisfying to learn that the new observations show what’s going on ‘under the hood’ in theory, and that it’s actually happening on the Sun,” he said.

The Sun is made up of several layers. Astronomers call its outermost layer the solar corona, which is only visible from Earth during a total solar eclipse. All solar activity in the corona is driven by the solar magnetic field. This activity…

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