Coronal mini-jets in an activated solar tornado-like prominence

Huadong Chen, Jun Zhang, Bart De Pontieu, Suli Ma, Bernhard Kliem, Eric Priest

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High-resolution observations from the Interface Region Imaging Spectrometer reveal the existence of a particular type of small solar jet, which arose singly or in clusters from a tornado-like prominence suspended in the corona. In this study, we perform a detailed statistical analysis of 43 selected mini-jets in the tornado event. Our results show that the mini-jets typically have (1) a projected length of 1.0–6.0 Mm, (2) a width of 0.2–1.0 Mm, (3) a lifetime of 10–50 s, (4) a velocity of 100–350 km s−1, and (5) an acceleration of 3–20 km s−2. Based on spectral diagnostics and EM-Loci analysis, these jets seem to be multithermal small-scale plasma ejections with an estimated average electron density of ~2.4 × 1010 cm−3 and an approximate mean temperature of ~2.6 × 105 K. Their mean kinetic energy density, thermal energy density, and dissipated magnetic field strength are roughly estimated to be ~9 erg cm−3, 3 erg cm−3, and 16 G, respectively. The accelerations of the mini-jets, the UV and EUV brightenings at the footpoints of some mini-jets, and the activation of the host prominence suggest that the tornado mini-jets are probably created by fine-scale external or internal magnetic reconnections (a) between the prominence field and the enveloping or background field or (b) between twisted or braided flux tubes within the prominence. The observations provide insight into the geometry of such reconnection events in the corona and have implications for the structure of the prominence magnetic field and the instability that is responsible for the eruption of prominences and coronal mass ejections.
Original languageEnglish
Article number19
Number of pages13
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 10 Aug 2020


  • The Sun
  • Solar activity
  • Solar prominences


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