On recurrent solar wind streams

A new approach to investigating the statistical relationship between certain solar features and recurrent wind streams is presented. This approach is based on a comparative analysis of the distributions of lifetimes of a set of solar features, recurrent geomagnetic disturbances, and geomagnetic "calms". Correlation coefficients of 0.81, 0.85, 0.79 and 0.77 are found for the distributions for several solar features -- filaments, large-scale magnetic fields, coronal features, and coronal holes respectively -- and recurrent geomagnetic disturbances. Correlation factor of 0.97 between the distributions of geomagnetic "calms" and active regions is found. The combined evidence indicates that no specific type of solar feature is responsible for the recurrent stream activity. Rather, the configuration of the large-scale magnetic field of the Sun appears to control the permanently existing corpuscular activity. Since prominences trace polarity division lines of the large-scale magnetic field structure of the Sun, they have been checked as a possible general predictor of the recurrent corpuscular activity; their parameters could present the most reliable indices that relate closely with trends in geomagnetic disturbances. A comparative analysis of cyclic variations of sunspot numbers, the total number of prominences, the relative number of low height (=< 20'') prominences and recurrent geomagnetic storms is made for solar cycle N16. The relative number of low-height prominences is found to correlate broadly (0.83) with recurrent wind streams.