Observations and Implications of Large-Amplitude Longitudinal Oscillations in a Solar Filament

Research paper by M. Luna, K. Knizhnik, K. Muglach, J. Karpen, H. Gilbert, T. A. Kucera, V. Uritsky

Indexed on: 03 Mar '14Published on: 03 Mar '14Published in: arXiv - Astrophysics - Solar and Stellar Astrophysics


On 20 August 2010 an energetic disturbance triggered large-amplitude longitudinal oscillations in a nearby filament. The triggering mechanism appears to be episodic jets connecting the energetic event with the filament threads. In the present work we analyze this periodic motion in a large fraction of the filament to characterize the underlying physics of the oscillation as well as the filament properties. The results support our previous theoretical conclusions that the restoring force of large-amplitude longitudinal oscillations is solar gravity, and the damping mechanism is the ongoing accumulation of mass onto the oscillating threads. Based on our previous work, we used the fitted parameters to determine the magnitude and radius of curvature of the dipped magnetic field along the filament, as well as the mass accretion rate onto the filament threads. These derived properties are nearly uniform along the filament, indicating a remarkable degree of cohesiveness throughout the filament channel. Moreover, the estimated mass accretion rate implies that the footpoint heating responsible for the thread formation, according to the thermal nonequilibrium model, agrees with previous coronal heating estimates. We estimate the magnitude of the energy released in the nearby event by studying the dynamic response of the filament threads, and discuss the implications of our study for filament structure and heating.