AAS 204th Meeting, June 2004
Session 55 Prominences
SPD Poster, Wednesday, June 2, 2004, 10:00am-7:00pm, Ballroom

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[55.05] Flux Collision Models of Prominence Formation, or Breaking Up is Hard to Do

B.T. Welsch (Space Sciences Lab, UC-Berkeley), C.R. DeVore, S. K. Antiochos (Naval Research Lab, DC)

To investigate the hypothesis that the prominences form by magnetic reconnection between initially distinct flux systems above the solar photosphere, we employ the \emph{ARMS} code, a 3D, flux-corrected transport MHD code with adaptive mesh refinement, to simulate magnetic field evolution when two flux systems are driven to collide by photospheric boundary motions. In particular, we focus on driving configurations similar to the prominence model of Martens and Zwaan (2001).

We find that: 1) reconnection proceeds only weakly, if at all, in typical active region configurations driven with differential-rotation-like shear, which leads to glancing collisions; 2) reconnection proceeds efficiently in configurations that are driven to collide directly, with converging motions along the neutral line; and 3) reconnected fields from this process can exhibit sheared, dipped field lines along the neutral line, consistent with prominence observations.

As our field configurations do not posses the ``breakout'' topology, eruptions are not observed.

This work was supported by ONR, NASA's SEC Theory program, and by a grant of computer time from the DOD High Performance Computing Modernization Program at the ERDC MSRC.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: welsch@ssl.berkeley.edu

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