A new technique for the photospheric driving of non-potential solar coronal magnetic field simulations

Marion Weinzierl, Anthony Yeates, Duncan Hendry Mackay, Carl Henney, C. Nick Arge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we develop a new technique for driving global non-potential simulations of the Sun's coronal magnetic field solely from sequences of radial magnetic maps of the solar photosphere. A primary challenge to driving such global simulations is that the required horizontal electric field cannot be uniquely determined from such maps. We show that an "inductive" electric field solution similar to that used by previous authors successfully reproduces specific features of the coronal field evolution in both single and multiple bipole simulations. For these cases, the true solution is known because the electric field was generated from a surface flux-transport model. The match for these cases is further improved by including the non-inductive electric field contribution from surface differential rotation. Then, using this reconstruction method for the electric field, we show that a coronal non-potential simulation can be successfully driven from a sequence of ADAPT maps of the photospheric radial field, without including additional physical observations which are not routinely available.
Original languageEnglish
Article number55
Number of pages16
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 May 2016


  • Magnetohydrodynamics (MHDs)
  • Sun: corona
  • Sun: coronal mass ejections (CMEs)
  • Sun: magnetic fields


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