NJIT Physics Department Seminar


3/31/08, Monday


Solar Coronal Magnetic Fields:

Source of Space Weather


Dr. Thomas Wiegelmann

Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research

Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany


(Solar & Terrestrial Physics, Host: Wang)


Room: 373 Tiernan

Time: Noon-1 pm with 11:30 am tea time


Instabilities in the solar corona like flares and coronal mass ejections can cause harmful effects, e.g., power cut-offs, damage to satellites and thread exposure of astronauts to energetic particles. It is therefore important to investigate these processes, in particular with aim of a better prediction of eruptive phenomena. The key for these processes is the magnetic field, which couples the solar interior with the solar atmosphere and dominates all other forces by several orders of magnitude in the corona. As high accuracy direct measurements of the coronal magnetic field are not available, we extrapolate ground based and space-born measurements of the photospheric magnetic field vector into the corona. Time series of the reconstructed 3D-magnetic field and plasma equilibria are analysed, for example regarding the amount of free energy available to trigger coronal eruptions, which are the cause of space weather.