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Transfer of Energy, Potential, and Current by Alfvén Waves in Solar Flares
Melrose, D. B.; Wheatland, M. S.
AA(Sydney Institute for Astronomy, School of Physics, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia), AB(Sydney Institute for Astronomy, School of Physics, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia)
Solar Physics, Volume 288, Issue 1, pp.223-240 (SoPh Homepage)
Publication Date:
Solar flares, Alfvén waves, Electron acceleration
Abstract Copyright:
(c) 2013: Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
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Alfvén waves play three related roles in the impulsive phase of a solar flare: they transport energy from a generator region to an acceleration region; they map the cross-field potential (associated with the driven energy release) from the generator region onto the acceleration region; and within the acceleration region they damp by setting up a parallel electric field that accelerates electrons and transfers the wave energy to them. The Alfvén waves may also be regarded as setting up new closed-current loops, with field-aligned currents that close across field lines at boundaries. A model is developed for large-amplitude Alfvén waves that shows how Alfvén waves play these roles in solar flares. A picket-fence structure for the current flow is incorporated into the model to account for the "number problem" and the energy of the accelerated electrons.
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