Interaction and Dynamics of the Photospheric Network Magnetic Elements

Research paper by M. Ryutova, T.D. Tarbell, R. Shine

Indexed on: 01 Apr '03Published on: 01 Apr '03Published in: Solar Physics


Small-scale magnetic elements in the quiet photospheric network are believed to play a key role in the energy flow from the solar surface to upper layers of atmosphere. Their intense hydro-magnetic activity includes merging and fragmentation of same polarity fluxes, `total' or partial cancellation of neighboring flux elements of opposite polarity, dynamic appearance and disappearance of compact bipoles, etc. We study the general features of these processes, and show that non-collinearity of flux tubes, sharp stratification of low atmosphere and finite plasma beta lead to several specific effects in the interacting flux tubes that may explain the morphological properties of network magnetic field and also provide a mechanism for the energy build up and release in the nearby chromosphere and transition region. We show that during the collision of flux tubes in the photosphere reconnection occurs regardless of whether the flux tubes are of opposite or of the same polarity. But the dynamics of reconnection products are significantly different and lead to different macroscopic effects that can be observed.