Stellar magnetic fields can be investigated using several, very complementary approaches. While conventional spectroscopy is capable of estimating the average magnetic strength of potentially complex field configurations thanks to its low sensitivity to the vector properties of the field, spectropolarimetry can be used to map the medium- and large-scale structure of magnetic topologies. In particular, the latter approach allows one to retrieve information about the poloidal and toroidal components of the large-scale dynamo fields in low-mass stars, and thus to investigate the physical processes that produce them. Similarly, this technique can be used to explore how magnetic fields couple young stars to their massive accretion disc and thus to estimate how much mass and angular momentum are transfered to the newly-born low-mass star. We present here the latest results in this field obtained with spectropolarimetry, with special emphasis on the surprising discoveries obtained on very-low mass fully-convective stars and classical T Tauri stars thanks to the ESPaDOnS spectropolarimeter recently installed on the 3.6m Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope.
|Title of host publication||Proceedings of the 14th Cambridge Workshop on Cool Stars, Stellar Systems, and the Sun|
|Editors||Greta T van Belle|
|Publisher||Astronomical Society of the Pacific|
|Number of pages||10|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 2008|