Re-interpretation of Supra-Arcade Downflows in Solar Flares

Дата и время публикации : 2011-12-14T01:00:14Z

Авторы публикации и институты :
Sabrina L. Savage
David E. McKenzie
Katharine K. Reeves

Ссылка на журнал-издание: 2012, ApJ, 747, L40
Коментарии к cтатье: 15 pages, 5 figures, Published to ApJL
Первичная категория: astro-ph.SR

Все категории : astro-ph.SR, physics.flu-dyn, physics.plasm-ph

Краткий обзор статьи: Following the eruption of a filament from a flaring active region, sunward-flowing voids are often seen above developing post-eruption arcades. First discovered using the soft X-ray telescope aboard Yohkoh, these supra-arcade downflows (SADs) are now an expected observation of extreme ultra-violet (EUV) and soft X-ray coronal imagers and spectrographs (e.g, TRACE, SOHO/SUMER, Hinode/XRT, SDO/AIA). Observations made prior to the operation of AIA suggested that these plasma voids (which are seen in contrast to bright, high-temperature plasma associated with current sheets) are the cross-sections of evacuated flux tubes retracting from reconnection sites high in the corona. The high temperature imaging afforded by AIA’s 131, 94, and 193 Angstrom channels coupled with the fast temporal cadence allows for unprecedented scrutiny of the voids. For a flare occurring on 2011 October 22, we provide evidence suggesting that SADs, instead of being the cross-sections of relatively large, evacuated flux tubes, are actually wakes (i.e., trailing regions of low density) created by the retraction of much thinner tubes. This re-interpretation is a significant shift in the fundamental understanding of SADs, as the features once thought to be identifiable as the shrinking loops themselves now appear to be "side effects" of the passage of the loops through the supra-arcade plasma. In light of the fact that previous measurements have attributed to the shrinking loops characteristics that may instead belong to their wakes, we discuss the implications of this new interpretation on previous parameter estimations, and on reconnection theory.

Category: Physics