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Title: THE 2011 FEBRUARY 15 X2 FLARE, RIBBONS, CORONAL FRONT, AND MASS EJECTION: INTERPRETING THE THREE-DIMENSIONAL VIEWS FROM THE SOLAR DYNAMICS OBSERVATORY AND STEREO GUIDED BY MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMIC FLUX-ROPE MODELING

The 2011 February 15 X2.2 flare and associated Earth-directed halo coronal mass ejection were observed in unprecedented detail with high resolution in spatial, temporal, and thermal dimensions by the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) on the Solar Dynamics Observatory, as well as by instruments on the two STEREO spacecraft, then at near-quadrature relative to the Sun-Earth line. These observations enable us to see expanding loops from a flux-rope-like structure over the shearing polarity-inversion line between the central {delta}-spot groups of AR 11158, developing a propagating coronal front ('EIT wave'), and eventually forming the coronal mass ejection moving into the inner heliosphere. The observations support the interpretation that all of these features, including the 'EIT wave', are signatures of an expanding volume traced by loops (much larger than the flux rope only), surrounded by a moving front rather than predominantly wave-like perturbations; this interpretation is supported by previously published MHD models for active-region and global scales. The lateral expansion of the eruption is limited to the local helmet-streamer structure and halts at the edges of a large-scale domain of connectivity (in the process exciting loop oscillations at the edge of the southern polar coronal hole). The AIA observations reveal that plasma warmingmore » occurs within the expansion front as it propagates over quiet Sun areas. This warming causes dimming in the 171 A (Fe IX and Fe X) channel and brightening in the 193 and 211 A (Fe XII-XIV) channels along the entire front, while there is weak 131 A (Fe VIII and Fe XXI) emission in some directions. An analysis of the AIA response functions shows that sections of the front running over the quiet Sun are consistent with adiabatic warming; other sections may require additional heating which MHD modeling suggests could be caused by Joule dissipation. Although for the events studied here the effects of volumetric expansion are much more obvious than true wave phenomena, we discuss how different magnetic environments within and around the erupting region can lead to the signatures of either or both of these aspects.« less
Authors:
;  [1] ; ; ;  [2]
  1. Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center, 3251 Hanover Street, Palo Alto, CA 94304 (United States)
  2. LESIA, Observatoire de Paris, CNRS, UPMC, Universite Paris Diderot, 5 Place Jules Janssen, 92190 Meudon (France)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
21584858
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 738; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/738/2/167; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMICS; MASS; SIMULATION; SOLAR CORONA; SOLAR FLARES; THREE-DIMENSIONAL CALCULATIONS ATMOSPHERES; FLUID MECHANICS; HYDRODYNAMICS; MECHANICS; SOLAR ACTIVITY; SOLAR ATMOSPHERE; STELLAR ACTIVITY; STELLAR ATMOSPHERES; STELLAR CORONAE; STELLAR FLARES