AAS 200th meeting, Albuquerque, NM, June 2002
Session 16. Atmospheric Heating and Dynamics I
Oral, Monday, June 3, 2002, 10:00-11:30am, Ballroom C

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[16.05] Methods of Temperature and Emission Measure Determination of Coronal Loops

J.W. Cirtain (Montana State University), J.T. Schmelz (University of Memphis), P.C.H. Martens (Montana State University)

Recent observational results from both SOHO-EIT and TRACE indicate that coronal loops are isothermal along their length (axially). These results are obtained from a narrowband filter ratio method that assumes that the plasma is isothermal along the line of sight (radially). However, these temperatures vary greatly from those derived from differential emission measure (DEM) curves produced from spectral lines recorded by SOHO-CDS. The DEM results indicate that the loops are neither axially nor radially isothermal. This discrepancy was investigated by Schmelz et al. (2001). They chose pairs of iron lines from the same CDS data set to mimic the EIT and TRACE loop results. Ratios of different lines gave different temperatures, indicating that the plasma was not radially isothermal. In addition the results indicated that the loop was axially isothermal, even though the DEM analysis of the same data showed this result to be false. Here we have analyzed the EIT data for the CDS loop published by Schmelz et al. (2001). We took the ratios of the 171-to-195 and 195-to-284 filter data, and made temperature maps of the loop. The results indicate that the loop is axially isothermal, but different temperatures were found for each pair of filters. Both ratio techniques force the resultant temperature to lie within the range where the response functions (for filters) or the emissivity functions (for lines) overlap; isothermal loops are therefore a byproduct of the analysis. This conclusion strengthens support for the idea that temperature and emission measure results from filter ratio methods may be misleading or even drastically wrong. This research was funded in part by the NASA/TRACE MODA grant for Montana State University. Solar physics research at the University of Memphis is supported by NASA grant NAG5-9783.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: jcirtain@solar.physics.montana.edu

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