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Title: DIVERGENT HORIZONTAL SUB-SURFACE FLOWS WITHIN ACTIVE REGION 11158

Abstract

We measure the horizontal subsurface flow in a fast emerging active region (AR; NOAA 11158) using the ring-diagram technique and the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager high spatial resolution Dopplergrams. This AR had a complex magnetic structure and displayed significant changes in morphology during its disk passage. Over a period of six days from 2011 February 11 to 16, the temporal variation in the magnitude of the total velocity is found to follow the trend of magnetic field strength. We further analyze regions of individual magnetic polarity within AR 11158 and find that the horizontal velocity components in these sub-regions have significant variation with time and depth. The leading and trailing polarity regions move faster than the mixed-polarity region. Furthermore, both zonal and meridional components have opposite signs for trailing and leading polarity regions at all depths showing divergent flows within the AR. We also find a sharp decrease in the magnitude of total horizontal velocity in deeper layers around major flares. It is suggested that the re-organization of magnetic fields during flares, combined with the sunspot rotation, decreases the magnitude of horizontal flows or that the flow kinetic energy has been converted into the energy released by flares. After themore » decline in flare activity and sunspot rotation, the flows tend to follow the pattern of magnetic activity. We also observe less variation in the velocity components near the surface but these tend to increase with depth, further demonstrating that the deeper layers are more affected by the topology of ARs.« less

Authors:
; ;  [1]
  1. National Solar Observatory, 950 N Cherry Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85719 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22522147
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 808; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; DIAGRAMS; KINETIC ENERGY; LAYERS; MAGNETIC FIELDS; ROTATION; SPATIAL RESOLUTION; SUN; SUNSPOTS; SURFACES; TOPOLOGY; VARIATIONS; VELOCITY

Citation Formats

Jain, Kiran, Tripathy, S. C., and Hill, F., E-mail: kjain@nso.edu, E-mail: stripathy@nso.edu, E-mail: fhill@nso.edu. DIVERGENT HORIZONTAL SUB-SURFACE FLOWS WITHIN ACTIVE REGION 11158. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/808/1/60.
Jain, Kiran, Tripathy, S. C., & Hill, F., E-mail: kjain@nso.edu, E-mail: stripathy@nso.edu, E-mail: fhill@nso.edu. DIVERGENT HORIZONTAL SUB-SURFACE FLOWS WITHIN ACTIVE REGION 11158. United States. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/808/1/60.
Jain, Kiran, Tripathy, S. C., and Hill, F., E-mail: kjain@nso.edu, E-mail: stripathy@nso.edu, E-mail: fhill@nso.edu. Mon . "DIVERGENT HORIZONTAL SUB-SURFACE FLOWS WITHIN ACTIVE REGION 11158". United States. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/808/1/60.
@article{osti_22522147,
title = {DIVERGENT HORIZONTAL SUB-SURFACE FLOWS WITHIN ACTIVE REGION 11158},
author = {Jain, Kiran and Tripathy, S. C. and Hill, F., E-mail: kjain@nso.edu, E-mail: stripathy@nso.edu, E-mail: fhill@nso.edu},
abstractNote = {We measure the horizontal subsurface flow in a fast emerging active region (AR; NOAA 11158) using the ring-diagram technique and the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager high spatial resolution Dopplergrams. This AR had a complex magnetic structure and displayed significant changes in morphology during its disk passage. Over a period of six days from 2011 February 11 to 16, the temporal variation in the magnitude of the total velocity is found to follow the trend of magnetic field strength. We further analyze regions of individual magnetic polarity within AR 11158 and find that the horizontal velocity components in these sub-regions have significant variation with time and depth. The leading and trailing polarity regions move faster than the mixed-polarity region. Furthermore, both zonal and meridional components have opposite signs for trailing and leading polarity regions at all depths showing divergent flows within the AR. We also find a sharp decrease in the magnitude of total horizontal velocity in deeper layers around major flares. It is suggested that the re-organization of magnetic fields during flares, combined with the sunspot rotation, decreases the magnitude of horizontal flows or that the flow kinetic energy has been converted into the energy released by flares. After the decline in flare activity and sunspot rotation, the flows tend to follow the pattern of magnetic activity. We also observe less variation in the velocity components near the surface but these tend to increase with depth, further demonstrating that the deeper layers are more affected by the topology of ARs.},
doi = {10.1088/0004-637X/808/1/60},
journal = {Astrophysical Journal},
number = 1,
volume = 808,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Jul 20 00:00:00 EDT 2015},
month = {Mon Jul 20 00:00:00 EDT 2015}
}
  • Both magnetic and current helicities are crucial ingredients for describing the complexity of active-region magnetic structure. In this Letter, we present the temporal evolution of these helicities contained in NOAA active region 11158 during five days from 2011 February 12 to 16. The photospheric vector magnetograms of the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager on board the Solar Dynamic Observatory were used as the boundary conditions for the coronal field extrapolation under the assumption of nonlinear force-free field, from which we calculated both relative magnetic helicity and current helicity. We construct a time-altitude diagram in which altitude distribution of the magnitude ofmore » current helicity density is displayed as a function of time. This diagram clearly shows a pattern of upwardly propagating current helicity density over two days prior to the X2.2 flare on February 15 with an average propagation speed of {approx}36 m s{sup -1}. The propagation is synchronous with the emergence of magnetic flux into the photosphere, and indicative of a gradual energy buildup for the X2.2 flare. The time profile of the relative magnetic helicity shows a monotonically increasing trend most of the time, but a pattern of increasing and decreasing magnetic helicity above the monotonic variation appears prior to each of two major flares, M6.6 and X2.2, respectively. The physics underlying this bump pattern is not fully understood. However, the fact that this pattern is apparent in the magnetic helicity evolution but not in the magnetic flux evolution makes it a useful indicator in forecasting major flares.« less
  • We study the three-dimensional magnetic structure of the solar active region 11158, which produced one X-class and several M-class flares on 2011 February 13-16. We focus on the magnetic twist in four flare events, M6.6, X2.2, M1.0, and M1.1. The magnetic twist is estimated from the nonlinear force-free field extrapolated from the vector fields obtained from the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager on board the Solar Dynamic Observatory using the magnetohydrodynamic relaxation method developed by Inoue et al. We found that strongly twisted lines ranging from half-turn to one-turn twists were built up just before the M6.6 and X2.2 flares andmore » disappeared after that. Because most of the twists remaining after these flares were less than a half-turn twist, this result suggests that the buildup of magnetic twist over the half-turn twist is a key process in the production of large flares. On the other hand, even though these strong twists were also built up just before the M1.0 and M1.1 flares, most of them remained afterward. Careful topological analysis before the M1.0 and M1.1 flares shows that the strongly twisted lines were surrounded mostly by the weakly twisted lines formed in accordance with the clockwise motion of the positive sunspot, whose footpoints are rooted in strong magnetic flux regions. These results imply that these weakly twisted lines might suppress the activity of the strongly twisted lines in the last two M-class flares.« less
  • We report a detailed event analysis of the M6.6 class flare in the active region (AR) NOAA 11158 on 2011 February 13. AR 11158, which consisted of two major emerging bipoles, showed prominent activity including one X- and several M-class flares. In order to investigate the magnetic structures related to the M6.6 event, particularly the formation process of a flare-triggering magnetic region, we analyzed multiple spacecraft observations and numerical results of a flare simulation. We observed that, in the center of this quadrupolar AR, a highly sheared polarity inversion line (PIL) was formed through proper motions of the major magneticmore » elements, which built a sheared coronal arcade lying over the PIL. The observations lend support to the interpretation that the target flare was triggered by a localized magnetic region that had an intrusive structure, namely, a positive polarity penetrating into a negative counterpart. The geometrical relationship between the sheared coronal arcade and the triggering region is consistent with the theoretical flare model based on the previous numerical study. We found that the formation of the trigger region was due to the continuous accumulation of small-scale magnetic patches. A few hours before the flare occurred, the series of emerged/advected patches reconnected with a pre-existing field. Finally, the abrupt flare eruption of the M6.6 event started around 17:30 UT. Our analysis suggests that in the process of triggering flare activity, all magnetic systems on multiple scales are included, not only the entire AR evolution but also the fine magnetic elements.« less
  • We study the role of rotating sunspots in relation to the evolution of various physical parameters characterizing the non-potentiality of the active region (AR) NOAA 11158 and its eruptive events using the magnetic field data from the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI) and multi-wavelength observations from the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) on board the Solar Dynamics Observatory. From the evolutionary study of HMI intensity and AIA channels, it is observed that the AR consists of two major rotating sunspots, one connected to a flare-prone region and another with coronal mass ejection (CME). The constructed space-time intensity maps reveal that themore » sunspots exhibited peak rotation rates coinciding with the occurrence of major eruptive events. Further, temporal profiles of twist parameters, namely, average shear angle, {alpha}{sub av}, {alpha}{sub best}, derived from HMI vector magnetograms, and the rate of helicity injection, obtained from the horizontal flux motions of HMI line-of-sight magnetograms, correspond well with the rotational profile of the sunspot in the CME-prone region, giving predominant evidence of rotational motion causing magnetic non-potentiality. Moreover, the mean value of free energy from the virial theorem calculated at the photospheric level shows a clear step-down decrease at the onset time of the flares revealing unambiguous evidence of energy release intermittently that is stored by flux emergence and/or motions in pre-flare phases. Additionally, distribution of helicity injection is homogeneous in the CME-prone region while in the flare-prone region it is not and often changes sign. This study provides a clear picture that both proper and rotational motions of the observed fluxes played significant roles in enhancing the magnetic non-potentiality of the AR by injecting helicity, twisting the magnetic fields and thereby increasing the free energy, leading to favorable conditions for the observed transient activity.« less
  • We studied the temporal evolution of the magnetic topology of the active region (AR) 11158 based on the reconstructed three-dimensional magnetic fields in the corona. The non-linear force-free field extrapolation method was applied to the 12 minute cadence data obtained with the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager on board the Solar Dynamics Observatory during 5 days. By calculating the squashing degree factor Q in the volume, the derived quasi-separatrix layers (QSLs) show that this AR has an overall topology, resulting from a magnetic quadrupole, including a hyperbolic flux tube (HFT) configuration that is relatively stable at the timescale of the flaremore » (∼1-2 hr). A strong QSL, which corresponds to some highly sheared arcades that might be related to the formation of a flux rope, is prominent just before the M6.6 and X2.2 flares, respectively. These facts indicate the close relationship between the strong QSL and the high flare productivity of AR 11158. In addition, with a close inspection of the topology, we found a small-scale HFT that has an inverse tear-drop structure above the aforementioned QSL before the X2.2 flare. It indicates the existence of magnetic flux rope at this place. Even though a global configuration (HFT) is recognized in this AR, it turns out that the large-scale HFT only plays a secondary role during the eruption. In conclusion, we dismiss a trigger based on the breakout model and highlight the central role of the flux rope in the related eruption.« less