Coronal Magnetic Field Measurements along a Partially Erupting Filament in a Solar Flare

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Abstract

Magnetic flux ropes are the centerpiece of solar eruptions. Direct measurements for the magnetic field of flux ropes are crucial for understanding the triggering and energy release processes, yet they remain heretofore elusive. Here we report microwave imaging spectroscopy observations of an M1.4-class solar flare that occurred on 2017 September 6, using data obtained by the Expanded Owens Valley Solar Array. This flare event is associated with a partial eruption of a twisted filament observed in Hα by the Goode Solar Telescope at the Big Bear Solar Observatory. The extreme ultraviolet (EUV) and X-ray signatures of the event are generally consistent with the standard scenario of eruptive flares, with the presence of double flare ribbons connected by a bright flare arcade. Intriguingly, this partial eruption event features a microwave counterpart, whose spatial and temporal evolution closely follow the filament seen in Hα and EUV. The spectral properties of the microwave source are consistent with nonthermal gyrosynchrotron radiation. Using spatially resolved microwave spectral analysis, we derive the magnetic field strength along the filament spine, which ranges from 600 to 1400 Gauss from its apex to the legs. The results agree well with the nonlinear force-free magnetic model extrapolated from the preflare photospheric magnetogram. We conclude that the microwave counterpart of the erupting filament is likely due to flare-accelerated electrons injected into the filament-hosting magnetic flux rope cavity following the newly reconnected magnetic field lines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number213
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume923
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 20 2021
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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