Photospheric shear flows along the magnetic neutral line of Active Region 10486 prior to an X10 flare

Guo Yang, Yan Xu, Wenda Cao, Haimin Wang, Carsten Denker, Thomas R. Rimmele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations

Abstract

We present high spatial resolution observations of proper motions in the solar NOAA Active Region 10486 using a high-order adaptive optics system, frame selection, and speckle-masking image reconstruction. The data were obtained with the Dunn Solar Telescope of the National Solar Observatory/Sacramento Peak on 2003 October 29. The resolution of the images approaches the diffraction-limited resolution of the Dunn Solar Telescope of about 0″14 at 527 nm. We analyzed a 2 hr time series with a 1 minute cadence prior to an X10 white-light flare. Local correlation tracking was used to measure the photospheric proper motions. We find specific evidence of strong shear flows along the magnetic neutral line; these shear flows are well defined and correlated with white-light flare kernels in the visible and infrared. The speed along the flow channels can reach up to 1.6 km s-1, and the separation of channels with head-on flows can be less than 1". Counterstreaming and complex flow patterns have been distinguishing characteristics of this extraordinarily flare-productive active region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L151-L154
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume617
Issue number2 II
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 20 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Keywords

  • Sun: activity
  • Sun: atmospheric motions
  • Sun: flares
  • Sun: photosphere
  • Sunspots
  • Techniques: high angular resolution

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