The study, which was led by Dr. Chen, is reported in Issue 52 of Science in China (G) because of its significant research value.
Many explosive phenomena on the Sun, such as solar flares, involve the energy conversion from the magnetic energy to thermal and kinetic energies in the corona, which is the outer atmosphere of the Sun. Therefore, the coronal magnetic field is extremely crucial in the understanding of these eruptive phenomena.
However, at present, only the magnetic field along the solar surface can be measured directly, whereas the magnetic field in the solar corona can hardly be measured. Despite some efforts of measuring through infrared spectral lines and of the inversion through radio emissions, the coronal magnetic field is generally approximated by extrapolating the magnetic field from the solar surface, which is however an ill-posed problem. Therefore, it would be great to have an alternative approach to diagnose the coronal magnetic field.
In 1997, the EUV Imaging Telescope (EIT in short) on board the European–US satellite, Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), discovered an unexpected wavelike phenomenon propagating in the solar corona, which was later named "EIT waves" after the telescope. "EIT waves" were explained successfully to be apparently propagating density enhancements compressed by the successive stretching of magnetic field lines during coronal mass ejections (CMEs), the largest-scale eruptive phenomenon on the Sun.
According to this model, the "EIT waves" propagation velocity is intimately determined by the 3-dimensional distribution of the coronal magnetic field. Based on such an interesting property, Dr. Chen proposed recently that the profile of the "EIT wave" propagation velocity can be utilized to probe the coronal magnetic field.
Dr. Chen told the reporter: "You know, we can already diagnose the deep structure of the Earth by analyzing seismic waves. Similarly, we now can diagnose the magnetic field in the solar corona by analyzing EIT waves, which in some sense can be analogized as helioseismic waves." He commented that, in this sense, "EIT wave" observations open a new window for solar physicists to look into the mysterious magnetic field in the solar corona, and would help uncover the explosive nature of many explosive phenomena, including solar flares. As also commented by a reviewer, "This is an interesting paper describing the observations and modeling of EIT waves, and illustrating how they can be applied to probe the global magnetic field in the corona".
"EIT waves" were originally explained as the magnetoacoustic waves, i.e., sound waves coupled with the magnetic field. Such a model was also used to estimate the magnetic field in the low corona. However, the magnetoacoustic wave model cannot account for various characteristics of "EIT waves". To reconcile the discrepancies, Dr. Chen and his collaborators from China, USA, and Japan put forward the magnetic field-line stretching model since 2002, which has been widely recognized in the solar physics community. In this newly published paper, Dr. Chen demonstrated that it is feasible to diagnose the magnetic field in the solar corona using the observations of "EIT wave" velocity profiles.
With the application of the "EIT wave" diagnostics, the 3-dimensional distribution of the solar coronal magnetic field is expected to be revealed, which would finally help unveil the nature of solar flares and CMEs, the two major driving sources of hazardous space disturbances to human high-tech activities, including navigations, telecommunications, manned missions, etc.
Dr. P. F. Chen is working in Department of Astronomy, Nanjing University. The department is one of the lead groups of astronomy research in China. The research was sponsored by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 10403003 and 10673004) and the Key Project of Chinese National Programs for Fundamental Research and Development (2006CB806302).
References:1. Chen P F. EIT waves and coronal magnetic field diagnosis. Sci China G-Phys Mech Astron, 2009, 52(11): 1785-1789
http://springer.r.delivery.net/r/r?2.1.Ee.2Tp.1hW1Qv.ByxLWW..H.Ixxu.3Geu.bW89MQ%5f%5fDUSeFVZ02. Chen P F, Wu S T, Shibata K and Fang C. Evidence of EIT and Moreton waves in numerical simulations. Astrophys J, 2002, 572: L99-L102
http://www.iop.org/EJ/abstract/1538-4357/572/1/L99/3 Chen P F, Fang C and Shibata K. A full view of EIT waves. Astrophys J, 2005, 622: 1202-1210
P. F. Chen | EurekAlert!
Seeing the quantum future... literally
16.01.2017 | University of Sydney
Airborne thermometer to measure Arctic temperatures
11.01.2017 | Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).
Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...
Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.
The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...
UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration
"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...
Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.
Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
05.01.2017 | Event News
16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering
16.01.2017 | Information Technology
16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering