Global Coronal Waves

Research paper by P. F. Chen

Indexed on: 27 Apr '16Published on: 27 Apr '16Published in: arXiv - Astrophysics - Solar and Stellar Astrophysics


After the {\em Solar and Heliospheric Observatory} ({\em SOHO}) was launched in 1996, the aboard Extreme Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (EIT) observed a global coronal wave phenomenon, which was initially named "EIT wave" after the telescope. The bright fronts are immediately followed by expanding dimmings. It has been shown that the brightenings and dimmings are mainly due to plasma density increase and depletion, respectively. Such a spectacular phenomenon sparked long-lasting interest and debates. The debates were concentrated on two topics, one is about the driving source, and the other is about the nature of this wavelike phenomenon. The controversies are most probably because there may exist two types of large-scale coronal waves that were not well resolved before the {\em Solar Dynamics Observatory} ({\em SDO}) was launched: one is a piston-driven shock wave straddling over the erupting coronal mass ejection (CME), and the other is an apparently propagating front, which may correspond to the CME frontal loop. Such a two-wave paradigm was proposed more than 13 years ago, and now is being recognized by more and more colleagues. In this paper, we review how various controversies can be resolved in the two-wave framework and how important it is to have two different names for the two types of coronal waves.