Heating and eruption of a solar circular-ribbon flare

Jeongwoo Lee, Judith T. Karpen, Chang Liu, Haimin Wang

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8 Scopus citations


We studied a circular-ribbon flare, SOL2014-12-17T04:51, with emphasis on its thermal evolution as determined by the differential emission measure (DEM) inversion analysis of the extreme ultraviolet (EUV) images of the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly instrument on board the Solar Dynamics Observatory. Both temperature and emission measure start to rise much earlier than the flare, along with an eruption and formation of a hot halo over the fan structure. In the main flare phase, another set of ribbons forms inside the circular ribbon, and expands as expected for ribbons at the footpoints of a postflare arcade. An additional heating event further extends the decay phase, which is also characteristic of some eruptive flares. The basic magnetic configuration appears to be a fan-spine topology, rooted in a minority-polarity patch surrounded by majority-polarity flux. We suggest that reconnection at the null point begins well before the impulsive phase, when the null is distorted into a breakout current sheet, and that both flare and breakout reconnection are necessary in order to explain the subsequent local thermal evolution and the eruptive activities in this confined magnetic structure. Using local DEMs, we found a postflare temperature increase inside the fan surface, indicating that the so-called EUV late phase is due to continued heating in the flare loops.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number158
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 20 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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