TERRAPUB Earth, Planets and Space

Earth Planets Space, Vol. 61 (No. 5), pp. 577-580, 2009


Flares and the chromosphere

Hugh S. Hudson1,2 and Lyndsay Fletcher2,1

1SSL, UC Berkeley, CA 94720-7450, USA
2University of Glasgow, UK

(Received December 2, 2007; Revised August 24, 2008; Accepted August 31, 2008; Online published May 29, 2009)

Abstract: The chromosphere (the link between the photosphere and the corona) plays a crucial role in flare and CME development. In analogies between flares and magnetic substorms, it is normally identified with the ionosphere, but we argue that the correspondence is not exact. Much of the important physics of this interesting region remains to be explored. We discuss chromospheric flares in the context of recent observations of white-light flares and hard X-rays as observed by TRACE and RHESSI, respectively. We interpret key features of these observations as results of the stepwise changes a flare produces in the photospheric magnetic field.
Key words: Solar flares, solar chromosphere, solar corona, Alfvén waves.

Corresponding author E-mail: hhudson@ssl.berkeley.edu

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