Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union


The A-Star Puzzle
Contributed Papers

Stellar magnetic fields: the view from the ground and from space


Gregg A. Wade a1
a1 Department of Physics, Royal Military College of Canada, P.O. Box 17000 Station Forces, Kingston, ON, Canada K7K 7B4 email: wade-g@rmc.ca

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Abstract

This article reviews the methods of measurement which allow us to infer the presence of magnetic fields in (A) stars. Beginning with the basic observational consequences of the Zeeman effect, we describe various modern spectroscopic and polarimetric techniques which allow us to directly detect and characterise magnetic fields in stellar photospheres. Sometimes, nature conspires to make such detections difficult, forcing us to rely on indirect (proxy) indicators of magnetism. This talk will also briefly discuss a number of these indirect field indicators, some of which demand space-based observations.


Key Words: Methods: data analysis; techniques: polarimetric; techniques: spectroscopic; stars: magnetic fields.


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