Selective spatial damping of propagating kink wavesto resonant absorption

Jaume Terradas, Marcel Goossens, Gary Verth

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Abstract

There is observational evidence of propagating kink waves driven by photospheric motions. These disturbances, interpreted as kink magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) waves are attenuated as they propagate upwards in the solar corona. In this paper we show that resonant absorption provides a simple explanation to the spatial damping of these waves. Kink MHD waves are studied using a cylindrical model of solar magnetic flux tubes which includes a non-uniform layer at the tube boundary. Assuming that the frequency is real and the longitudinal wavenumber complex, the damping length and damping per wavelength produced by resonant absorption are analytically calculated. The damping length of propagating kink waves due resonant absorption is a monotonically decreasing function of frequency. For kink waves with low frequencies the damping length is exactly inversely proportional to frequency and we denote this as the TGV relation. When moving to high frequencies the TGV relation continues to be an exceptionally good approximation of the actual dependency of the damping length on frequency. This dependency means that resonant absorption is selective as it favours low frequency waves and can efficiently remove high frequency waves from a broad band spectrum of kink waves. It is selective as the damping length is inversely proportional to frequency so that the damping becomes more severe with increasing frequency. This means that radial inhomogeneity can cause solar waveguides to be a natural low-pass filter for broadband disturbances. Hence kink wave trains travelling along, e.g., coronal loops, will have a greater proportion of the high frequency components dissipated lower down in the atmosphere. This could have important consequences with respect to the spatial distribution of wave heating in the solar atmosphere
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23
JournalAstronomy & Astrophysics
Volume524
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010

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