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Title: Toward Improved Understanding of Magnetic Fields Participating in Solar Flares: Statistical Analysis of Magnetic Fields within Flare Ribbons
Abstract Violent solar flares and coronal mass ejections (CMEs) are magnetic phenomena. However, how magnetic fields reconnecting in the flare differ from nonflaring magnetic fields remains unclear owing to the lack of studies of the flare magnetic properties. Here we present a first statistical study of flaring (highlighted by flare ribbons) vector magnetic fields in the photosphere. Our systematic approach allows us to describe the key physical properties of solar flare magnetism, including distributions of magnetic flux, magnetic shear, vertical current, and net current over flaring versus nonflaring parts of the active region (AR), and compare these with flare/CME properties. Our analysis suggests that while flares are guided by the physical properties that scale with AR size, like the total amount of magnetic flux that participates in the reconnection process and the total current (extensive properties), CMEs are guided by mean properties, like the fraction of the AR magnetic flux that participates (intensive property), with little dependence on the amount of shear at the polarity inversion line (PIL) or the net current. We find that the nonneutralized current is proportional to the amount of shear at the PIL, providing direct evidence that net vertical currents are formed as a result of any mechanism that could generate magnetic shear along the PIL. We also find that eruptive events tend to have smaller PIL fluxes and larger magnetic shears than confined events. Our analysis provides a reference for more realistic solar and stellar flare models. The database is available online and can be used for future quantitative studies of flare magnetism.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1851945 2147399 1848250
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal
Page Range / eLocation ID:
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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