The triggering of MHD instabilities through photospheric footpoint motions

CL Gerrard, TD Arber, Alan William Hood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The results of 3D numerical simulations modelling the twisting of a coronal loop due to photospheric vortex motions are presented. The simulations are carried out using an initial purely axial field and an initial equilibrium configuration with twist, Phi = LBtheta/rB(z) < &UPhi;(crit). The non-linear and resistive evolutions of the instability are followed. The magnetic field is twisted by the boundary motions into a loop which initially has boundary layers near the photospheric boundaries as has been suggested by previous work. The boundary motions increase the twist in the loop until it becomes unstable. For both cases the boundary twisting triggers the kink instability. In both cases a helical current structure wraps itself around the kinked central current. This current scales linearly with grid resolution indicating current sheet formation. For the cases studied 35-40% of the free magnetic energy is released. This is sufficient to explain the energy released in a compact loop are.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)687-699
Number of pages13
JournalAstronomy & Astrophysics
Volume387
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2002

Keywords

  • MHD
  • Sun : photosphere
  • TIED CORONAL LOOPS
  • MAGNETIC-FLUX TUBES
  • KINK INSTABILITY
  • NUMERICAL SIMULATIONS
  • SOLAR CORONA
  • EVOLUTION
  • RECONNECTION
  • EMERGENCE
  • MODES

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