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Quiet Sun magnetic fields observed by Hinode: Support for a local dynamo  [PDF]
D. Buehler,A. Lagg,S. K. Solanki
Physics , 2013, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201321152
Abstract: The Hinode mission has revealed copious amounts of horizontal flux covering the quiet Sun. Local dynamo action has been proposed to explain the presence of this flux. We sought to test whether the quiet Sun flux detected by Hinode is due to a local or the global dynamo by studying long-term variations in the polarisation signals detectable at the disc centre of the quiet Sun between November 2006 and May 2012, with particular emphasis on weak signals in the internetwork. The investigation focusses on line-integrated circular polarisation V_tot and linear polarisation LP_tot profiles obtained from the Fe I 6302.5 \AA absorption line in Hinode SOT/SP. Both circular and linear polarisation signals show no overall variation in the fraction of selected pixels from 2006 until 2012. There is also no variation in the magnetic flux in this interval of time. The probability density functions (PDF) of the line-of-sight magnetic flux can be fitted with a power law from 1.17 x 10^17 Mx to 8.53 x 10^18 Mx with index \alpha=-1.82 \pm 0.02 in 2007. The variation of \alpha 's across all years does not exceed a significance of 1\sigma. Linearly polarised features are also fitted with a power law, with index \alpha=-2.60 \pm 0.06 in 2007. Indices derived from linear polarisation PDFs of other years also show no significant variation. Our results show that the ubiquitous horizontal polarisation on the edges of bright granules seen by Hinode are invariant during the minimum of cycle 23. This supports the notion that the weak circular and linear polarisation is primarily caused by an independent local dynamo.
Asymmetries of the Stokes V profiles observed by HINODE SOT/SP in the quiet Sun  [PDF]
B. Viticchié,J. Sánchez Almeida
Physics , 2011, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201016096
Abstract: We present the first classification of SOT/SP circular polarization measurements with the aim of highlighting exhaustively the whole variety of Stokes V shapes emerging from the quiet Sun. k-means is used to classify HINODE SOT/SP Stokes V profiles observed in the quiet Sun network and internetwork (IN). We analyze a 302 x 162 square arcsec field-of-view (FOV) which can be considered a complete sample of quiet Sun measurements performed at at the disk center with 0.32 arcsec angular resolution and 0.001 polarimetric sensitivity. Such a classification allows us to divide the whole dataset in classes, with each class represented by a cluster profile, i.e., the average of the profiles in the class. The set of 35 cluster profiles derived from the analysis completely characterizes SOT/SP quiet Sun measurements. The separation between network and IN profile shapes is evident - classes in the network are not present in the IN, and vice versa. Asymmetric profiles are approximatively 93 % of the total number of profiles. Among these, approximatively 34 % of the profiles are strongly asymmetric profiles, and they can be divided in three families: blue-lobe, red-lobe, and Q-like profiles. The blue-lobe profiles tend to be associated with upflows (granules), whereas the red-lobe and Q-like ones appear in downflows (intergranular lanes). Such profiles need to be interpreted considering model atmospheres different from a uniformly magnetized Milne-Eddington (ME) atmosphere, i.e., characterized by gradients and/or discontinuities in the magnetic field and velocity along the line-of-sight (LOS).
The Horizontal Magnetic Field of the Quiet Sun: Numerical Simulations in Comparison to Observations with Hinode  [PDF]
O. Steiner,R. Rezaei,R. Schlichenmaier,W. Schaffenberger,S. Wedemeyer-B?hm
Physics , 2009,
Abstract: Three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic simulations of the surface layers of the Sun intrinsically produce a predominantly horizontal magnetic field in the photosphere. This is a robust result in the sense that it arises from simulations with largely different initial and boundary conditions for the magnetic field. While the disk-center synthetic circular and linear polarization signals agree with measurements from Hinode, their center-to-limb variation sensitively depends on the height variation of the horizontal and the vertical field component and they seem to be at variance with the observed behavior.
Mesogranulation and small-scale dynamo action in the quiet Sun  [PDF]
Paul J. Bushby,Benjamin Favier
Physics , 2014, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201322993
Abstract: Regions of quiet Sun generally exhibit a complex distribution of small-scale magnetic field structures, which interact with the near-surface turbulent convective motions. Furthermore, it is probable that some of these magnetic fields are generated locally by a convective dynamo mechanism. In addition to the well-known granular and supergranular convective scales, various observations have indicated that there is an intermediate scale of convection, known as mesogranulation, with vertical magnetic flux concentrations accumulating preferentially at mesogranular boundaries. Our aim is to investigate the small-scale dynamo properties of a convective flow that exhibits both granulation and mesogranulation, comparing our findings with solar observations. Adopting an idealised model for a localised region of quiet Sun, we use numerical simulations of compressible magnetohydrodynamics, in a 3D Cartesian domain, to investigate the parametric dependence of this system (focusing particularly upon the effects of varying the aspect ratio and the Reynolds number). In purely hydrodynamic convection, we find that mesogranulation is a robust feature of this system provided that the domain is wide enough to accommodate these large-scale motions. The mesogranular peak in the kinetic energy spectrum is more pronounced in the higher Reynolds number simulations. We investigate the dynamo properties of this system in both the kinematic and the nonlinear regimes and we find that the dynamo is always more efficient in larger domains, when mesogranulation is present. Furthermore, we use a filtering technique in Fourier space to demonstrate that it is indeed the larger scales of motion that are primarily responsible for driving the dynamo. In the nonlinear regime, the magnetic field distribution compares very favourably to observations, both in terms of the spatial distribution and the measured field strengths.
The small-scale solar surface dynamo  [PDF]
Jonathan Pietarila Graham,Sanja Danilovic,Manfred Schuessler
Physics , 2010,
Abstract: The existence of a turbulent small-scale solar surface dynamo is likely, considering existing numerical and laboratory experiments, as well as comparisons of a small-scale dynamo in MURaM simulations with Hinode observations. We find the observed peaked probability distribution function (PDF) from Stokes-V magnetograms is consistent with a monotonic PDF of the actual vertical field strength. The cancellation function of the vertical flux density from a Hinode SP observation is found to follow a self-similar power law over two decades in length scales down to the ~200 km resolution limit. This provides observational evidence that the scales of magnetic structuring in the photosphere extend at least down to 20 km. From the power law, we determine a lower bound for the true quiet-Sun mean vertical unsigned flux density of ~43 G, consistent with our numerically-based estimates that 80% or more of the vertical unsigned flux should be invisible to Stokes-V observations at a resolution of 200 km owing to cancellation. Our estimates significantly reduce the order-of-magnitude discrepancy between Zeeman- and Hanle-based estimates.
The Temperature and Density Structure of the Solar Corona. I. Observations of the Quiet Sun with the EUV Imaging Spectrometer (EIS) on Hinode  [PDF]
Harry P. Warren,David H. Brooks
Physics , 2009, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/700/1/762
Abstract: Measurements of the temperature and density structure of the solar corona provide critical constraints on theories of coronal heating. Unfortunately, the complexity of the solar atmosphere, observational uncertainties, and the limitations of current atomic calculations, particularly those for Fe, all conspire to make this task very difficult. A critical assessment of plasma diagnostics in the corona is essential to making progress on the coronal heating problem. In this paper we present an analysis of temperature and density measurements above the limb in the quiet corona using new observations from the EUV Imaging Spectrometer (EIS) on \textit{Hinode}. By comparing the Si and Fe emission observed with EIS we are able to identify emission lines that yield consistent emission measure distributions. With these data we find that the distribution of temperatures in the quiet corona above the limb is strongly peaked near 1 MK, consistent with previous studies. We also find, however, that there is a tail in the emission measure distribution that extends to higher temperatures. EIS density measurements from several density sensitive line ratios are found to be generally consistent with each other and with previous measurements in the quiet corona. Our analysis, however, also indicates that a significant fraction of the weaker emission lines observed in the EIS wavelength ranges cannot be understood with current atomic data.
Nature of Quiet Sun Oscillations Using Data from the Hinode, TRACE, and SOHO Spacecraft  [PDF]
G. R. Gupta,S. Subramanian,D. Banerjee,M. S. Madjarska,J. G. Doyle
Physics , 2012, DOI: 10.1007/s11207-012-0146-y
Abstract: We study the nature of quiet-Sun oscillations using multi-wavelength observations from TRACE, Hinode, and SOHO. The aim is to investigate the existence of propagating waves in the solar chromosphere and the transition region via analyzing the statistical distribution of power in different locations, e.g. in bright magnetic (network), bright non-magnetic and dark non-magnetic (inter-network) regions, separately. We use Fourier power and phase-difference techniques combined with a wavelet analysis. Two-dimensional Fourier power maps were constructed in the period bands 2-4 minutes, 4-6 minutes, 6-15 minutes, and beyond 15 minutes. We detect the presence of long-period oscillations with periods between 15 and 30 minutes in bright magnetic regions. These oscillations were detected from the chromosphere to the transition region. The Fourier power maps show that short-period powers are mainly concentrated in dark regions whereas long-period powers are concentrated in bright magnetic regions. This is the first report of long-period waves in quiet-Sun network regions. We suggest that the observed propagating oscillations are due to magnetoacoustic waves which can be important for the heating of the solar atmosphere.
Evidence for Quasi-isotropic Magnetic Fields from Hinode Quiet Sun Observations  [PDF]
A. Asensio Ramos
Physics , 2009, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/701/2/1032
Abstract: Some recent investigations of spectropolarimetric observations of the Zeeman effect in the Fe I lines at 630 nm carried out with the Hinode solar space telescope have concluded that the strength of the magnetic field vector in the internetwork regions of the quiet Sun is in the hG regime and that its inclination is predominantly horizontal. We critically reconsider the analysis of such observations and carry out a complete Bayesian analysis with the aim of extracting as much information as possible from them, including error bars. We apply the recently developed BayesME code that carries out a complete Bayesian inference for Milne-Eddington atmospheres. The sampling of the posterior distribution function is obtained with a Markov Chain Monte Carlo scheme and the marginal distributions are analyzed in detail. The Kullback-Leibler divergence is used to study the extent to which the observations introduce new information in the inference process resulting in sufficiently constrained parameters. Our analysis clearly shows that only upper limits to the magnetic field strength can be inferred with fields in the kG regime completely discarded. Furthermore, the noise level present in the analyzed Hinode observations induces a substantial loss of information for constraining the azimuth of the magnetic field. Concerning the inclination of the field, we demonstrate that some information is available to constrain it for those pixels with the largest polarimetric signal. The results also point out that the field in pixels with small polarimetric signals can be nicely reproduced in terms of a quasi-isotropic distribution.
Diagnostics of the Coronal Hole and the adjacent Quiet Sun by The Hinode/EUV Imaging Spectrometer (EIS)  [PDF]
P. Kayshap,D. Banerjee,A. K. Srivastava
Physics , 2014, DOI: 10.1007/s11207-015-0763-3
Abstract: A comparison between a Coronal Hole (CH) and the adjacent Quiet-Sun (QS) has been performed using spectroscopic diagnostics of Hinode/ the EUV Imaging Spectrometer (EIS). Coronal funnels play an important role in the formation and propagation of the nascent fast solar wind. Applying Gaussian fitting procedures to the observed line profiles, Doppler velocity, intensity, line width (FWHM) and electron density have been estimated over CH and adjacent QS region of a North Polar Coronal Hole (NPCH). The aim of this study is to identify the coronal funnels based on spectral signatures. Excess width regions (excess FWHM above a threshold level) have been identified in QS and CH. The plasma flow inversion (average red-shifts changing to blue-shifts at a specific height) in CH and excess width regions of QS take place at ~ 5.01$\times$10$^{5}$ K. Furthermore, high density concentration in excess width regions of QS provides an indication that these regions are the footprints of coronal funnels. We have also found that non-thermal velocities of CH are higher in comparison to QS confirming that the CHs are the source regions of fast solar wind. Doppler and non-thermal velocities as recorded by different temperature lines have been also compared with previously published results. As we go from lower to upper solar atmosphere, down-flows are dominated in lower atmosphere while coronal lines are dominated by up-flows with a maximum value of ~ 10-12 km s$^{-1}$ in QS. Non-thermal velocity increases first but after Log T$_{e}$ = 5.47 it decreases further in QS. This trend can be interpreted as a signature of the dissipation of Alfv\'en waves, while increasing trend as reported earlier may attribute to the signature of the growth of Alfv\'en waves at lower heights. Predominance of occurrence of nano-flares around O {\sc vi} formation temperature could also explain non-thermal velocity trend.
Interpretation of HINODE SOT/SP asymmetric Stokes profiles observed in quiet Sun network and internetwork  [PDF]
B. Viticchié,J.,Sánchez Almeida,D. Del Moro,F. Berrilli
Physics , 2010, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201015391
Abstract: We present the first interpretation of the Stokes profile asymmetries measured in the FeI 630 nm lines by SOT/SP, in both quiet Sun internetwork (IN) and network regions. The inversion is carried out under the hypothesis of MISMA, where the unresolved structure is assumed to be optically thin. We analyze a 29.52"x31.70" subfield carefully selected to be representative of the properties of a 302"x162" quiet Sun field-of-view at disk center. The inversion code is able to reproduce the observed asymmetries in a very satisfactory way. The inversion code interprets 25% of inverted profiles as emerging from pixels in which both positive and negative polarities coexist. kG field strengths are found at the base of the photosphere in both network and IN; in the case of the latter, both kG fields and hG fields are admixed. When considering the magnetic properties at the mid photosphere most kG fields are gone, and the statistics is dominated by hG fields. We constrain the magnetic field of only 4.5% of the analyzed photosphere (and this percentage reduces to 1.3% when referred to all pixels, including those with low polarization not analyzed). The rest of the plasma is consistent with the presence of weak fields not contributing to the detected polarization signals. The average flux densities derived in the full subfield and in IN regions are higher than the ones derived from the same dataset by Milne-Eddington inversion. The existence of large asymmetries in SOT/SP polarization profiles is uncovered. These are not negligible in quiet Sun data. The MISMA inversion code reproduces them in a satisfactory way, and provides a statistical description of the magnetized IN and network which partly differs and complements the results obtained so far. From this it follows the importance of having a complete interpretation of the line profile shapes.
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