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Eruptivity Criteria for Two-dimensional Magnetic Flux Ropes in the Solar Corona

Rice, Oliver E. and Yeates, Anthony R. (2022) 'Eruptivity Criteria for Two-dimensional Magnetic Flux Ropes in the Solar Corona.', Frontiers in Astronomy and Space Sciences, 9 . p. 849135.


We apply the magneto-frictional approach to investigate which quantity or quantities can best predict the loss of equilibrium of a translationally-invariant magnetic flux rope. The flux rope is produced self-consistently by flux cancellation combined with gradual footpoint shearing of a coronal arcade which is open at the outer boundary. This models the magnetic field in decaying active regions on the Sun. Such a model permits two types of eruption: episodic small events caused by shearing and relaxation of the overlying arcade, and major eruptions of the main low-lying coronal flux rope. Through a parameter study, we find that the major eruptions are best predicted not by individual quantities but by thresholds in the ratios of squared rope current to either magnetic energy or relative magnetic helicity. We show how to appropriately define the latter quantity for translationally-invariant magnetic fields, along with a related eruptivity index that has recently been introduced for three-dimensional magnetic fields. In contrast to previous configurations studied, we find that the eruptivity index has only a weak predictive skill, and in fact is lower prior to eruption, rather than higher. This is because the overlying background magnetic field has the same direction as the arcade itself. Thus we propose that there are a whole class of solar eruptions that cannot be predicted by a high eruptivity index.

Item Type:Article
Full text:(AM) Accepted Manuscript
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Publisher statement:© 2022 Rice and Yeates. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Date accepted:08 March 2022
Date deposited:11 March 2022
Date of first online publication:20 April 2022
Date first made open access:11 March 2022

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