Monday, June 24, 2013

1305.2246 (David H. Brooks et al.)

High Spatial Resolution Observations of Loops in the Solar Corona    [PDF]

David H. Brooks, Harry P. Warren, Ignacio Ugarte-Urra, Amy R. Winebarger
Understanding how the solar corona is structured is of fundamental importance to determining how the Sun's upper atmosphere is heated to high temperatures. Recent spectroscopic studies have suggested that an instrument with a spatial resolution of 200km or better is necessary to resolve coronal loops. The High Resolution Coronal Imager (Hi-C) achieved this performance on a rocket flight in July 2012. We use Hi-C data to measure the Gaussian widths of 91 loops observed in the solar corona and find a distribution that peaks at about 270km. We also use Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) data for a subset of 79 of these loops and find that their temperature distributions are narrow. These observations provide further evidence that loops in the solar corona are structured at a scale of several hundred kilometers, well above the spatial scale of proposed physical mechanisms.
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