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Prediction of the Sun's coronal magnetic field and forward-modeled polarization characteristics for the 2019 July 2 total solar eclipse.

Dash, Soumyranjan and Bhowmik, Prantika and B S, Athira and Ghosh, Nirmalya and Nandy, Dibyendu (2020) 'Prediction of the Sun's coronal magnetic field and forward-modeled polarization characteristics for the 2019 July 2 total solar eclipse.', Astrophysical journal., 890 (1). p. 37.


On 2019 July 2 a total solar eclipse—visible across parts of the Southern Pacific Ocean, Chile, and Argentina—enabled observations of the Sun's corona. The structure and emission characteristics of the corona are determined by underlying magnetic fields, which also govern coronal heating and solar eruptive events. However, coronal magnetic field measurements remain an outstanding challenge. Coronal magnetic field models serve an important purpose in this context. Earlier work has demonstrated that the large-scale coronal structure is governed by surface flux evolution and memory buildup, which allows for its prediction on solar rotational timescales. Utilizing this idea and based upon a 51 day forward run of a predictive solar surface flux transport model and a potential field source surface model, we predict the coronal structure of the 2019 July 2 solar eclipse. We also forward model the polarization characteristics of the coronal emission. Our prediction of two large-scale streamer structures and their locations on the east and west limbs of the Sun match eclipse observations reasonably well. We demonstrate that the Sun's polar fields strongly influence the modeled corona, concluding that accurate polar field observations are critical. This study is relevant for coronal magnetometry initiatives envisaged with the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope, Coronal Multichannel Polarimeter and upcoming space-based instruments such as Solar Orbiter, Solar Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope and the Variable Emission Line Coronagraph on board the Indian Space Research Organisation's Aditya-L1 space mission.

Item Type:Article
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Publisher statement:© 2020. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Date accepted:10 January 2020
Date deposited:26 February 2020
Date of first online publication:11 February 2020
Date first made open access:26 February 2020

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