Astrophysical and stellar magnetism

  • Dorch, Bertil F. (Project manager)
  • Nordlund, Åke (Working partner)
  • Freytag, Bernd (Working partner)
  • Archontis, V. (Working partner)
  • Gudiksen, Boris V. (Working partner)
  • Christensen, Majken Brahe Ellegaard (In charge of work packages)

Project: Research

Project Details


Astrophysical theories and magneto-hydrodynamical computer simulations are compared to astronomical observations of stars, especially dwarf stars such as The Sun and supergiants exemplified by alfa Orionis (Betelgeuse).

Key findings

Both detailed 3-dimensional magneto-hydrodynamical numerical simulations and subsequent astronomical observations have now shown that the red supergiant star Alpha Orionis aka. Betelgeuse is magnetic and likely driven by an astrophysical dynamo relying on supergranular convection flows.

Layman's description

The red star Betelegeuse also known as Orion's shoulder is magnetic due to enormous energy flows on scales larger than our Sun itself. What was first theorized in this project using computer models, was later confirmed by modern observations. Indeed, stars like Betelgeuse have spots, similar to the well-known sunspots of our own star, although Betelgeuse and the Sun are very different types of stars.
Short titleStellar magnetism
Effective start/end date10/04/2002 → …


  • Astronomy
  • Astrophysics
  • Stars
  • Dynamos
  • Betelgeuse
  • The Sun
  • Supergiants
  • Supernovae

Research Output

Jul i Tycho Brahes Uranienborg

Translated title of the contribution: Christmas at Tycho Brahe's UranienborgChristensen, M. B. E., Holck, J. P. & Dorch, B. F., 14. Dec 2017, - ForskerZonen

Research output: Other contributionNet publication - Internet publicationCommunication

Open Access
  • Flux ropes in the magnetic solar convection zone: Numerical simulations

    Dorch, S. B. F., 2009, Solar Active Regions and 3D Magnetic Structure, 26th metting of the IAU joint Discussion 3, 16-17 August, Prague, Czech Republic. Cambridge University Press, p. JD03

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearch

    Buoyant magnetic flux ropes in a magnetized stellar envelope: Idealized numerical 2.5-D MHD simulations

    Dorch, B., 2007, In : Astronomy & Astrophysics. 461, 1, p. 325-330 6 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    Open Access
    21 Downloads (Pure)


    • 4 Talks and presentations in private or public companies
    • 2 Conference organisation or participation
    • 1 Membership of research networks or expert groups

    Orion’s red giant: Giant, magnetic, explosive?

    Bertil F. Dorch (Lecturer)

    15. Apr 201927. Apr 2019

    Activity: Talks and presentationsTalks and presentations in private or public companies

    8th LISA Conference

    Bertil F. Dorch (Organizer)

    6. Jun 20179. Jun 2017

    Activity: Attending an eventConference organisation or participation

    Betelgeuse - gigantisk, magnetisk, eksplosiv?

    Bertil F. Dorch (Lecturer)

    24. Apr 201725. Apr 2017

    Activity: Talks and presentationsTalks and presentations in private or public companies

    Press / Media

    Vil kæmpestjernen Betelgeuse forårsage dommedag?

    Bertil F. Dorch


    1 Media contribution

    Press/Media: Press / Media