Solar coronal heating by plasma waves

R. Bingham, P.K. Shukla, Bengt Eliasson, L. Stenflo

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6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The solar coronal plasma is maintained at temperatures of millions of degrees, much hotter than the photosphere, which is at a temperature of just 6000 K. In this paper, the plasma particle heating based on the kinetic theory of wave-particle interactions involving kinetic Alfvén waves and lower-hybrid drift modes is presented. The solar coronal plasma is collisionless and therefore the heating must rely on turbulent wave heating models, such as lower-hybrid drift models at reconnection sites or the kinetic Alfvén waves. These turbulent wave modes are created by a variety of instabilities driven from below. The transition region at altitudes of about 2000 km is an important boundary chromosphere, since it separates the collision-dominated photosphere/chromosphere and the collisionless corona. The collisionless plasma of the corona is ideal for supporting kinetic wave-plasma interactions. Wave-particle interactions lead to anisotropic non-Maxwellian plasma distribution functions, which may be investigated by using spectral analysis procedures being developed at the present time.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135-158
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Plasma Physics
Volume76
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2010

Keywords

  • solar coronal heating
  • plasma waves

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