We suggest that the polar heliospheric magnetic field, at large heliocentric distances, may deviate considerably from the generally accepted Archimedean spiral. Instead, we suggest that the large‐scale field near the poles may be dominated by randomly‐oriented transverse magnetic fields with magnitude much larger than the average spiral. The average vector field is still the spiral, but the average magnitude may be much larger. In addition, the field direction is transverse to the radial direction most of the time instead of being nearly radial. This magnetic‐field structure has important consequences for the transport of cosmic rays. Preliminary model calculations suggest changes in the radial gradient of galactic cosmic rays which may improve agreement with observations.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)