AAS 200th meeting, Albuquerque, NM, June 2002
Session 3. Solar Magnetic Fields
Display, Monday, June 3, 2002, 9:20am-6:30pm, SW Exhibit Hall

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[3.03] Quiet Sun Magnetic Helicity Transport: I. Mutual Helicity Flux

B. Welsch (Space Sciences Lab., U.C. -Berkeley), D. Longcope (Dept. of Physics, Montana State University)

The flux of magnetic helicity through the solar photosphere has implications in diverse areas of current solar research, including solar dynamo modelling and coronal heating.

Other researchers have investigated the flux of magnetic helicity from active regions; here, we do the same for quiet-sun magnetic fields.

We derive a theoretical expression for the total helicity flux in terms of ``mutual'' and ``self'' helicities, which arise from the relative motions of separate flux elements and the time evolution of the quadrupole moments of individual magnetic flux elements, respectively.

Using a tracking algorithm applied to high cadence, high resolution SOHO/MDI magnetograms, we determine the observed rate of MUTUAL helicity flux in the quiet sun and compare these measurements with our theoretical predictions.

This work has been funded by the National Science Foundation (grants ATM-9733424 and PHY99-07949) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (grant NAG5-6110).

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.