Astronomers have uncovered the nature of the mysterious “fire tornado” in the Sun

Unusual plasma tornado open on the surface of the Sun five years ago was not like earth vortices — their first three-dimensional pictures showed that they stand still and do not rotate.

Астрономи розкрили природу загадкових «вогняних торнадо» на Сонці

This was stated by scientists during a speech at the European week of astronomy and science in the British Liverpool, reports Rus.Media.

“We found that the appearance of these tornadoes is misleading. In fact, the magnetic field in them is not stretched vertically as we expected, but horizontally, and the plasma moves mostly in the same direction. These structures turned into a “tornado” SDO images using the distortion associated with the what angle we look at them,” said Nicholas Labrosse (Nicholas Labross) from the University of Glasgow (Scotland).

The high temperature of the corona is the uppermost layer of the solar atmosphere still remain a mystery to astrophysicists. Underlying layers of the Sun — the photosphere, the chromosphere is heated to a temperature of ten thousand degrees Kelvin. In the boundary layer between the corona and the photosphere several kilometers thick this temperature increases of hundreds of thousands of times and millions of degrees Kelvin.

A full explanation of this phenomenon, no doubt the majority of scientists do not yet exist. Most astronomers believe that the solar atmosphere is heated powerful plasma ejections and flares, occasionally occurring at the surface at those points where there are protuberances and their younger “sisters”-the spicules, however, definitive evidence for this has not been found.

The first hints of the mechanism of heating the corona, it tells Labrosse, was found, as believed by scientists, in March 2012 the cameras of the probe SDO, studying the crown of the world from February 2010.

Studying the Foundation of the surroundings of prominences, British astronomers were able to find a few giant magnetic structures similar in shape to a tornado. These fiery vortices, where the fabric moved with a speed of 300 thousand kilometres per hour, were not in place, and “walked” across the surface of the disc, raising the matter of his bowels in chronosphere along a spiral path.

This movement, which is similar to the way air moves inside the earth’s hurricanes, scientists a little later was one of the main mechanisms of heating and acceleration of matter in the corona of the Sun, with which, however, did not agree with many other astrophysicists. Labros and his colleagues found the first evidence that this is true, creating the first three-dimensional map of these plasma tornado”.

To do this, scientists took advantage of the fact that any fast moving matter that emits light, will look a bit different when driving on our side and from us. According to this principle, physics is called the “Doppler effect”, in the first case, it would seem we are more “blue” and the second “red.”

Camera SDO cannot be used for measurements of the spectrum of the Sun with high precision, and therefore Labros and his team had to combine images from NASA probe data, which were obtained at the same time by using the Japanese orbiting telescope “Hinode”, which has ultra-sensitive spectrometers.

By measuring the Doppler effect in different parts of the solar “tornado”, the researchers unexpectedly found that they don’t look like how they imagined at the pictures from SDO. It turned out that the hot plasma moves them up the spiral but in a circle, in fact, remain at the same height relative to the surface of the disc.

This manner of movement of the plasma, as explained by astrophysics, suggests that these structures are similar in their real form, not on tornado, and thick strands or “hair”, do not differ on the device from the normal prominences. In other words, no tornado on the Sun, and they are unable to participate in the opening act of the crown, sums up Labros.

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