We consider a method to extract the part of a given geomagnetic secular variation (SV) model that is not consistent with a frozen-flux condition. This condition is usually derived from the diffusionless radial induction equation at the core-mantle boundary (CMB), and is defined explicitly in the spatial domain: radial flux changes within closed null-flux curves at the core surface are not allowed at any instant. We study here this condition in the spherical harmonic (SH) domain, relying on the SH expansion of the diffusionless equation. SV models at a certain epoch are separated into advective and non-advective parts. The advective (resp. non-advective) part satisfies (resp. does not satisfy) the frozen-flux condition redefined in the SH domain. We show that this separation is not unique. In this work, we achieve a unique separation by assuming the orthogonality of the two parts in terms of the radial SV energy at the CMB. From the recent geomagnetic models, GRIMM and CM4, we find that the non-advective part shows up mainly in the small reverse patches of the radial magnetic field at the CMB. However, non-advective behaviors are also observed outside these patches. As far as no restriction is imposed on core flow configuration, time variations of the non-advective part are not correlated to those of the SV models. However, if the flow is restricted to be tangentially geostrophic, time variations of the SV models have to be partly non-advective. Furthermore, for this flow configuration, the secular decrease of the axial dipole has to be largely non-advective.
Asari, Seiki Lesur, Vincent Mandea, Mioara