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Comparison of STEREO/EUVI Loops with Potential  

Anne Sandman   Submitted: 2009-06-13 15:43

The Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) provides the first opportunity to triangulate the three-dimensional coordinates of active region loops simultaneously from two different vantage points in space. Three-dimensional coordinates of the coronal magnetic field have been calculated with theoretical magnetic field models for decades, but it is only with the recent availability of STEREO data that a rigorous, quantitative comparison between observed loop geometries and theoretical magnetic field models can be performed. Such a comparison provides a valuable opportunity to assess the validity of theoretical magnetic field models. Here we measure the misalignment angles between model magnetic fields and observed coronal loops in three active regions, as observed with the Extreme Ultraviolet Imager (EUVI) on STEREO on 30 April, 9 May, and 19 May 2007. We perform stereoscopic triangulation of some 100 - 200 EUVI loops in each active region and compute extrapolated magnetic field lines using magnetogram information from the Michelson Doppler Imager (MDI) on the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO). We examine two different magnetic extrapolation methods: (1) a potential field and (2) a radially stretched potential field that conserves the magnetic divergence. We find considerable disagreement between each theoretical model and the observed loop geometries, with an average misalignment angle on the order of 20-40 degrees. We conclude that there is a need for either more suitable (coronal rather than photospheric) magnetic field measurements or more realistic field extrapolation models.

Authors: A.W. Sandman, M.J. Aschwanden, M.L. DeRosa, J.P. Wuelser, D. Alexander
Projects: STEREO

Publication Status: Accepted
Last Modified: 2009-06-14 15:09
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Comparison of STEREO/EUVI Loops with Potential

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