The gradient of rotation in the near-surface shear layer (NSSL) of the Sun provides valuable insights into the dynamics associated with the solar activity cycle and the dynamo. Results obtained with global oscillation mode splittings lack resolution near the surface, prompting the use of the local helioseismic ring-diagram method. While the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager ring-analysis pipeline has been used previously for analyzing this layer, default pipeline parameters limit the accuracy of the near-surface gradients. To address these challenges, we fitted the flow parameters to power spectra averaged over one-year periods at each location, followed by additional averaging over 12 yr. We find that the NSSL can be divided into three fairly distinct regions: a deeper, larger region with a small shear, steepening toward the surface; a narrow middle layer with a strong shear, with a gradient approximately 3 times larger; and a layer very close to the surface, where the logarithmic gradient is close to zero but becomes steeper again toward the surface. The middle layer appears to be centered at 3 Mm, but the poor resolution in these layers implies that it is potentially located closer to the surface, around 1.5 Mm deep. While our analysis primarily focused on regions along the central meridian, we also investigated systematic errors at longitudes off the center. The east–west antisymmetric component of the gradient reveals a layer of substantial differences between the east and west longitude of around 1.7 Mm, and the amplitude of the differences increases with the longitude.

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