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Dalmasse Kevin, Pariat Etienne, Démoulin Pascal, Aulanier Guillaume

Photospheric Injection of Magnetic Helicity: Connectivity-Based Flux Density Method

Solar Physics, 2014, vol. 289, pp. 107-136

Référence DOI : 10.1007/s11207-013-0326-4
Référence ADS : 2014SoPh..289..107D

Résumé :

Magnetic helicity quantifies the degree to which the magnetic field in a volume is globally sheared and/or twisted. This quantity is believed to play a key role in solar activity due to its conservation property. Helicity is continuously injected into the corona during the evolution of active regions (ARs). To better understand and quantify the role of magnetic helicity in solar activity, the distribution of magnetic helicity flux in ARs needs to be studied. The helicity distribution can be computed from the temporal evolution of photospheric magnetograms of ARs such as the ones provided by SDO/HMI and Hinode/SOT. Most recent analyses of photospheric helicity flux derived a proxy to the helicity-flux density based on the relative rotation rate of photospheric magnetic footpoints. Although this proxy allows a good estimate of the photospheric helicity flux, it is still not a true helicity flux density because it does not take into account the connectivity of the magnetic field lines. For the first time, we implement a helicity density that takes this connectivity into account. To use it for future observational studies, we tested the method and its precision on several types of models involving different patterns of helicity injection. We also tested it on more complex configurations - from magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) simulations - containing quasi-separatrix layers. We demonstrate that this connectivity-based proxy is best-suited to map the true distribution of photospheric helicity injection.

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