Probing dynamics of electron acceleration with radio and x-ray spectroscopy, imaging, and timing in the 2002 april 11 solar flare

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Abstract

Based on detailed analysis of radio and X-ray observations of a flare on 2002 April 11 augmented by realistic three-dimensional modeling, we have identified a radio emission component produced directly at the flare acceleration region. This acceleration region radio component has distinctly different (1) spectrum, (2) light curves, (3) spatial location, and, thus, (4) physical parameters from those of the separately identified trapped or precipitating electron components. To derive evolution of physical parameters of the radio sources we apply forward fitting of the radio spectrum time sequence with the gyrosynchrotron source function with five to six free parameters. At the stage when the contribution from the acceleration region dominates the radio spectrum, the X-ray- and radio-derived electron energy spectral indices agree well with each other. During this time the maximum energy of the accelerated electron spectrum displays a monotonic increase with time from ∼300 keV to ∼2 MeV over roughly one minute duration indicative of an acceleration process in the form of growth of the power-law tail; the fast electron residence time in the acceleration region is about 2-4 s, which is much longer than the time of flight and so requires a strong diffusion mode there to inhibit free-streaming propagation. The acceleration region has a relatively strong magnetic field, B ∼ 120 G, and a low thermal density, n e ≲ 2 × 109 cm-3. These acceleration region properties are consistent with a stochastic acceleration mechanism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number190
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume768
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 10 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Keywords

  • Sun: flares
  • Sun: magnetic topology
  • Sun: radio radiation
  • acceleration of particles-
  • diffusion
  • turbulence

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