First high-resolution look at the quiet Sun with ALMA at 3mm

A. Nindos, C. E. Alissandrakis, T. S. Bastian, S. Patsourakos, B. De Pontieu, H. Warren, T. Ayres, H. S. Hudson, T. Shimizu, J. C. Vial, S. Wedemeyer, Vasyl Yurchyshyn

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28 Scopus citations


We present an overview of high-resolution quiet Sun observations, from disk center to the limb, obtained with the Atacama Large millimeter and sub-millimeter Array (ALMA) at 3 mm. Seven quiet-Sun regions were observed at a resolution of up to 2.5″ by 4.5″. We produced both average and snapshot images by self-calibrating the ALMA visibilities and combining the interferometric images with full-disk solar images. The images show well the chromospheric network, which, based on the unique segregation method we used, is brighter than the average over the fields of view of the observed regions by ∼305 K while the intranetwork is less bright by ∼280 K, with a slight decrease of the network/intranetwork contrast toward the limb. At 3 mm the network is very similar to the 1600 Å images, with somewhat larger size. We detect, for the first time, spicular structures, rising up to 15″ above the limb with a width down to the image resolution and brightness temperature of ∼1800 K above the local background. No trace of spicules, either in emission or absorption, is found on the disk. Our results highlight the potential of ALMA for the study of the quiet chromosphere.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL6
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • Sun: chromosphere
  • Sun: radio radiation


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