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Title: Decay-phase cooling and inferred heating of M- and X-class solar flares

In this paper, the cooling of 72 M- and X-class flares is examined using GOES/XRS and SDO/EVE. The observed cooling rates are quantified and the observed total cooling times are compared with the predictions of an analytical zero-dimensional hydrodynamic model. We find that the model does not fit the observations well, but does provide a well-defined lower limit on a flare's total cooling time. The discrepancy between observations and the model is then assumed to be primarily due to heating during the decay phase. The decay-phase heating necessary to account for the discrepancy is quantified and found be ∼50% of the total thermally radiated energy, as calculated with GOES. This decay-phase heating is found to scale with the observed peak thermal energy. It is predicted that approximating the total thermal energy from the peak is minimally affected by the decay-phase heating in small flares. However, in the most energetic flares the decay-phase heating inferred from the model can be several times greater than the peak thermal energy.
Authors:
;  [1] ; ;  [2]
  1. School of Physics, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2 (Ireland)
  2. Solar Physics Laboratory (Code 671), Heliophysics Science Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD 20771 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22341990
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 778; 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; APPROXIMATIONS; COMPARATIVE EVALUATIONS; COOLING TIME; DECAY; FORECASTING; HYDRODYNAMIC MODEL; SOLAR FLARES; SUN