We present a linear analysis of inviscid, incompressible, magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) shallow water systems. In spherical geometry, a generic property of such systems is the existence of five wave modes. Three of them (two magneto-Poincaré modes and one magneto-Rossby mode) are previously known. The other two wave modes are strongly influenced by the magnetic field and rotation, and have substantially lower angular frequencies; as such, we term them "magnetostrophic modes." We obtain analytical functions for the velocity, height, and magnetic field perturbations in the limit that the magnitude of the MHD analogue of Lamb's parameter is large. On a sphere, the magnetostrophic modes reside near the poles, while the other modes are equatorially confined. Magnetostrophic modes may be an ingredient in explaining the frequency drifts observed in Type I X-ray bursts from neutron stars.
The Astrophysical Journal
- Pub Date:
- October 2009
- stars: neutron;
- X-rays: bursts;
- Astrophysics - High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena
- 15 pages (emulateapj), 4 figures. Accepted by ApJ (no changes in text from previous versions, but ApJ wants no acronyms in title). To appear in Oct 2009, Vol 703/704 of the Astrophysical Journal