Observations of Solar Coronal Rain in Null Point Topologies. (arXiv:1904.08982v1 [astro-ph.SR])

Observations of Solar Coronal Rain in Null Point Topologies. (arXiv:1904.08982v1 [astro-ph.SR])
<a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Mason_E/0/1/0/all/0/1">E. I. Mason</a>, <a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Antiochos_S/0/1/0/all/0/1">S. K. Antiochos</a>, <a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Viall_N/0/1/0/all/0/1">N. M. Viall</a>

Coronal rain is the well-known phenomenon in which hot plasma high in the
Sun’s corona undergoes rapid cooling (from > 10^6 K to < 10^4 K), condenses, and falls to the surface. Coronal rain appears frequently in active region coronal loops and is very common in post-flare loops. This Letter presents discovery observations, which show that coronal rain is ubiquitous in the embedded bipole very near a coronal hole boundary. Our observed structures formed when the photospheric decay of active region leading sunspots resulted in a large parasitic polarity embedded in a background unipolar region. We observe coronal rain to appear within the legs of closed loops well under the fan surface, as well as preferentially near separatrices of the resulting coronal topology: the spine lines, null point, and fan surface. We analyze 3 events using SDO Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) observations in the 304, 171, and 211 {/AA} channels, as well as SDO Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI) magnetograms. The frequency of rain formation and the ease with which it is observed strongly suggests that this phenomenon is generally present in null-point topologies of this size scale. We argue that these rain events could be explained by the classic process of thermal nonequilibrium or via interchange reconnection at the null; it is also possible that both mechanisms are present. Further studies with higher spatial resolution data and MHD simulations will be required to determine the exact mechanism(s).

Coronal rain is the well-known phenomenon in which hot plasma high in the
Sun’s corona undergoes rapid cooling (from > 10^6 K to < 10^4 K), condenses,
and falls to the surface. Coronal rain appears frequently in active region
coronal loops and is very common in post-flare loops. This Letter presents
discovery observations, which show that coronal rain is ubiquitous in the
embedded bipole very near a coronal hole boundary. Our observed structures
formed when the photospheric decay of active region leading sunspots resulted
in a large parasitic polarity embedded in a background unipolar region. We
observe coronal rain to appear within the legs of closed loops well under the
fan surface, as well as preferentially near separatrices of the resulting
coronal topology: the spine lines, null point, and fan surface. We analyze 3
events using SDO Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) observations in the 304,
171, and 211 {/AA} channels, as well as SDO Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager
(HMI) magnetograms. The frequency of rain formation and the ease with which it
is observed strongly suggests that this phenomenon is generally present in
null-point topologies of this size scale. We argue that these rain events could
be explained by the classic process of thermal nonequilibrium or via
interchange reconnection at the null; it is also possible that both mechanisms
are present. Further studies with higher spatial resolution data and MHD
simulations will be required to determine the exact mechanism(s).

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