Damping of prominence longitudinal oscillations due to mass accretion 

Manuel Luna Submitted: 20160511 04:46
We study the damping of longitudinal oscillations of a prominence thread caused by the mass accretion. We suggested a simple model describing this phenomenon. In this model we considered a thin curved magnetic tube filled with the plasma. The prominence thread is in the central part of the tube and it consists of dense cold plasma. The parts of the tube at the two sides of the thread are filled with hot rarefied plasma. We assume that there are flows of rarefied plasma toward the thread caused by the plasma evaporation at the magnetic tube footpoints. Our main assumption is that the hot plasma is instantaneously accommodated by the thread when it arrives at the thread, and its temperature and density become equal to those of the thread. Then we derive the system of ordinary differential equations describing the thread dynamics. We solve this system of ordinary differential equations in two particular cases. In the first case we assume that the magnetic tube is composed of an arc of a circle with two straight lines attached to its ends such that the whole curve is smooth. A very important property of this model is that the equations describing the thread oscillations are linear for any oscillation amplitude. We obtain the analytical solution of the governing equations. Then we obtain the analytical expressions for the oscillation damping time and periods. We find that the damping time is inversely proportional to the accretion rate. The oscillation periods increase with time. We conclude that the oscillations can damp in a few periods if the inclination angle is sufficiently small, not larger that 10°, and the flow speed is sufficiently large, not less that 30 km s^{1}. In the second model we consider the tube with the shape of an arc of a circle. The thread oscillates with the pendulum frequency dependent exclusively of the radius of curvature of the arc. The damping depends on the mass accretion rate and the initial mass of the threads, that is the mass of the thread at the moment when it is perturbed. First we consider small amplitude oscillations and use the linear description. Then we consider nonlinear oscillations and assume that the damping is slow, meaning that the damping time is much larger that the characteristic oscillation time. The thread oscillations are described by the solution of the nonlinear pendulum problem with slowly varying amplitude. The nonlinearity reduces the damping time, however this reduction is small. Again the damping time is inversely proportional to the accretion rate. We also obtain that the oscillation periods decrease with time. However even for the largest initial oscillation amplitude considered in our article the period reduction does not exceed 20%. We conclude that the mass accretion can damp the motion of the threads rapidly. Thus, this mechanism can explain the observed strong damping of largeamplitude longitudinal oscillations. In addition, the damping time can be used to determine the mass accretion rate and indirectly the coronal heating.
Authors: Michael S. Ruderman and Manuel Luna
Projects: None

Publication Status: Accepted for publication in Astronomy and Astrophysics
Last Modified: 20160511 08:53


