Solar flares: recent advances on observations and modelling
Why are flare ribbons generically elongated in configurations with magnetic null points?
David Pontin
Klaus Galsgaard (Neils Bohr Institute), Pascal Demoulin (Observatoire de Paris)
University of Dundee
Coronal magnetic null points exist in abundance as demonstrated by extrapolations of the coronal field, and have been inferred to be important for a broad range of energetic events including some flares. These null points and their associated separatrix and spine field lines represent discontinuities of the field line mapping, making them preferential locations for reconnection in the corona. In addition, the field line mapping in the vicinity of these null points exhibits strong gradients as measured by the “squashing factor”, Q. We demonstrate that the extension of the Q halos around the spine/fan footpoints is in general important for diagnosing the regions of the photosphere that are magnetically connected to any current layer that forms at the null. In light of this, we discuss the extent to which our results can be used to interpret the geometry of observed flare ribbons in events in which a coronal null is implicated. We conclude that together the physics in the vicinity of the null and how this is related to the extension of Q away from the spine/fan can be used in tandem to understand observational signatures of reconnection at coronal null points.
16:30 - 18:00
EX - C33 (150)