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Reconnection-Driven Dynamics of Coronal-Hole Boundaries View all abstracts by submitter

Benjamin Lynch   Submitted: 2009-12-04 18:54

We investigate the effect of magnetic reconnection on the boundary between open and closed magnetic field in the solar corona. The magnetic topology for our numerical study consists of a global dipole that gives rise to polar coronal holes and an equatorial streamer belt, and a smaller active-region bipole embedded inside the closed-field streamer belt. The initially potential magnetic field is energized by a rotational motion at the photosphere that slowly twists the embedded-bipole flux. Due to the applied stress, the bipole field expands outward and reconnects with the surrounding closed flux, eventually tunneling through the streamer boundary and encountering the open flux of the coronal hole. The resulting interchange reconnection between closed and open field releases the magnetic twist and free energy trapped inside the bipole onto open field lines, where they freely escape into the heliosphere along with the entrained closed-field plasma. Thereafter, the bipole field relaxes and reconnects back down into the interior of the streamer belt. Our simulation shows that the detailed properties of magnetic reconnection can be crucial to the coronal magnetic topology, which implies that both potential-field source-surface and quasi-steady magnetohydrodynamic models may often be an inadequate description of the corona and solar wind. We discuss the implications of our results for understanding the dynamics of the boundary between open and closed field on the Sun and the origins of the slow wind.

Authors: J. K. Edmondson, B. J. Lynch, S. K. Antiochos, C. R. DeVore and T. H. Zurbuchen
Projects: None

Publication Status: published 2009 ApJ vol. 707 pg.1427-1437, doi: 10.1088/0004-637X/707/2/1427
Last Modified: 2009-12-07 10:35
Go to main E-Print page  Outflows at the Edges of an Active Region in a Coronal Hole:  A Signature of Active Region Expansion?  Eruptions from solar ephemeral regions as an extension of the size distribution of coronal mass ejections  Edit Entry  Download Preprint  Delete Entry 

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