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Title: THE HANLE AND ZEEMAN POLARIZATION SIGNALS OF THE SOLAR Ca II 8542 Å LINE

Abstract

We highlight the main results of a three-dimensional (3D) multilevel radiative transfer investigation about the solar disk-center polarization of the Ca ii 8542 Å line. First, through the use of a 3D model of the solar atmosphere, we investigate the linear polarization that occurs due to the atomic level polarization produced by the absorption and scattering of anisotropic radiation, taking into account the symmetry-breaking effects caused by its thermal, dynamic, and magnetic structure. Second, we study the contribution of the Zeeman effect to the linear and circular polarization. Finally, we show examples of the Stokes profiles produced by the joint action of the atomic level polarization and the Hanle and Zeeman effects. We find that the Zeeman effect tends to dominate the linear polarization signals only in the localized patches of opposite magnetic polarity, where the magnetic field is relatively strong and slightly inclined; outside such very localized patches, the linear polarization is often dominated by the contribution of atomic level polarization. We demonstrate that a correct modeling of this last contribution requires taking into account the symmetry-breaking effects caused by the thermal, dynamic, and magnetic structure of the solar atmosphere, and that in the 3D model used the Hanlemore » effect in forward-scattering geometry (disk-center observation) mainly reduces the polarization corresponding to the zero-field case. We emphasize that, in general, a reliable modeling of the linear polarization in the Ca ii 8542 Å line requires taking into account the joint action of atomic level polarization and the Hanle and Zeeman effects.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2]
  1. Astronomical Institute ASCR, Fričova 298, 251 65 Ondřejov (Czech Republic)
  2. Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, E-38205 La Laguna, Tenerife (Spain)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22654269
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal Letters; Journal Volume: 826; 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; ABSORPTION; ANISOTROPY; CHROMOSPHERE; MAGNETIC FIELDS; POLARIZATION; RADIANT HEAT TRANSFER; SCATTERING; SUN; SYMMETRY BREAKING; THREE-DIMENSIONAL CALCULATIONS; THREE-DIMENSIONAL LATTICES; ZEEMAN EFFECT

Citation Formats

Štěpán, Jiri, and Bueno, Javier Trujillo. THE HANLE AND ZEEMAN POLARIZATION SIGNALS OF THE SOLAR Ca II 8542 Å LINE. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.3847/2041-8205/826/1/L10.
Štěpán, Jiri, & Bueno, Javier Trujillo. THE HANLE AND ZEEMAN POLARIZATION SIGNALS OF THE SOLAR Ca II 8542 Å LINE. United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8205/826/1/L10.
Štěpán, Jiri, and Bueno, Javier Trujillo. 2016. "THE HANLE AND ZEEMAN POLARIZATION SIGNALS OF THE SOLAR Ca II 8542 Å LINE". United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8205/826/1/L10.
@article{osti_22654269,
title = {THE HANLE AND ZEEMAN POLARIZATION SIGNALS OF THE SOLAR Ca II 8542 Å LINE},
author = {Štěpán, Jiri and Bueno, Javier Trujillo},
abstractNote = {We highlight the main results of a three-dimensional (3D) multilevel radiative transfer investigation about the solar disk-center polarization of the Ca ii 8542 Å line. First, through the use of a 3D model of the solar atmosphere, we investigate the linear polarization that occurs due to the atomic level polarization produced by the absorption and scattering of anisotropic radiation, taking into account the symmetry-breaking effects caused by its thermal, dynamic, and magnetic structure. Second, we study the contribution of the Zeeman effect to the linear and circular polarization. Finally, we show examples of the Stokes profiles produced by the joint action of the atomic level polarization and the Hanle and Zeeman effects. We find that the Zeeman effect tends to dominate the linear polarization signals only in the localized patches of opposite magnetic polarity, where the magnetic field is relatively strong and slightly inclined; outside such very localized patches, the linear polarization is often dominated by the contribution of atomic level polarization. We demonstrate that a correct modeling of this last contribution requires taking into account the symmetry-breaking effects caused by the thermal, dynamic, and magnetic structure of the solar atmosphere, and that in the 3D model used the Hanle effect in forward-scattering geometry (disk-center observation) mainly reduces the polarization corresponding to the zero-field case. We emphasize that, in general, a reliable modeling of the linear polarization in the Ca ii 8542 Å line requires taking into account the joint action of atomic level polarization and the Hanle and Zeeman effects.},
doi = {10.3847/2041-8205/826/1/L10},
journal = {Astrophysical Journal Letters},
number = 1,
volume = 826,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month = 7
}
  • Magnetic field measurements in the upper chromosphere and above, where the gas-to-magnetic pressure ratio β is lower than unity, are essential for understanding the thermal structure and dynamical activity of the solar atmosphere. Recent developments in the theory and numerical modeling of polarization in spectral lines have suggested that information on the magnetic field of the chromosphere-corona transition region could be obtained by measuring the linear polarization of the solar disk radiation at the core of the hydrogen Lyα line at 121.6 nm, which is produced by scattering processes and the Hanle effect. The Chromospheric Lyman-Alpha SpectroPolarimeter (CLASP) sounding rocketmore » experiment aims to measure the intensity (Stokes I) and the linear polarization profiles (Q/I and U/I) of the hydrogen Lyα line. In this paper, we clarify the information that the Hanle effect can provide by applying a Stokes inversion technique based on a database search. The database contains all theoretical Q/I and U/I profiles calculated in a one-dimensional semi-empirical model of the solar atmosphere for all possible values of the strength, inclination, and azimuth of the magnetic field vector, though this atmospheric region is highly inhomogeneous and dynamic. We focus on understanding the sensitivity of the inversion results to the noise and spectral resolution of the synthetic observations as well as the ambiguities and limitation inherent to the Hanle effect when only the hydrogen Lyα is used. We conclude that spectropolarimetric observations with CLASP can indeed be a suitable diagnostic tool for probing the magnetism of the transition region, especially when complemented with information on the magnetic field azimuth that can be obtained from other instruments.« less
  • We highlight the main results of a radiative transfer investigation on the magnetic sensitivity of the solar Mg ii k resonance line at 2795.5 Å, accounting for the joint action of the Hanle and Zeeman effects as well as partial frequency redistribution phenomena. We confirm that at the line center, the linear polarization signals produced by scattering processes are measurable, and that they are sensitive, via the Hanle effect, to magnetic fields with strengths between 5 and 50 G, approximately. We also show that the Zeeman effect produces conspicuous circular polarization signals, especially for longitudinal fields stronger than 50 G,more » which can be used to estimate the magnetization of the solar chromosphere via the familiar magnetograph formula. The most novel result is that magneto-optical effects produce, in the wings of the line, a decrease of the Q / I scattering polarization pattern and the appearance of U / I signals (i.e., a rotation of the plane of linear polarization). This sensitivity of the Q / I and U / I wing signals to both weak (∼5 G) and stronger magnetic fields expands the scientific interest of the Mg ii k line for probing the chromosphere in quiet and active regions of the Sun.« less
  • The quantum theory of polarized light allows one to model scattering in the solar atmosphere for inferring its properties. This powerful approach has revealed two key long-standing problems in solar physics: the puzzling dilemmas between theory and observations in several anomalously polarized spectral lines and the need for inferring the ubiquitous weak chromospheric magnetic fields, which requires discriminating the Hanle effect in dynamic optically thick plasmas. However, the ever-present dynamics, i.e., the temporal evolution of heatings and macroscopic motions, has been widely disregarded when modeling and interpreting the scattering polarization. This has hindered a consistent theoretical solution to the puzzlemore » while falsifying the Hanle diagnosis. Here, we show that the dynamical evolution is a keystone for solving both problems because its systematic impact allows an explanation of the observations from “anomalous” instantaneous polarization signals. Evolution accounted for, we reproduce amplitudes and (spectral and spatial) shapes of the Ca i 4227 Å polarization at solar disk center, identifying a restrictive arrangement of magnetic fields, kinematics, heatings, and spatio-temporal resolution. We find that the joint action of dynamics, Hanle effect, and low temporal resolutions mimics Zeeman linear polarization profiles, the true weak-field Zeeman signals being negligible. Our results allow reinterpretation of many polarization signals of the solar spectra and support time-dependent scattering polarization as a powerful tool for deciphering the spatio-temporal distribution of chromospheric heatings and fields. This approach may be a key aid in developing the Hanle diagnosis for the solar atmosphere.« less
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