Stereoscopic observations of the effects of a halo CME on the solar coronal structure⋆
INAF – Catania Astrophysical Observatory, 95123 Catania, Italy
Received: 17 January 2014
Accepted: 29 April 2014
We investigated the substantial restructuring of the outer solar corona in the aftermath of the halo CME that occurred on 9 March 2012. To perform our analysis, we used SOHO/LASCO, STEREO/COR1 and SDO/AIA data, which provide observations from different viewpoints. In particular, we applied the polarization ratio technique to the COR1 calibrated images to derive the three-dimensional structure of the CME and determine its direction and speed of propagation. We also estimated the CME mass from a sequence of four observations of the event and obtained values of up to 2.2 × 1016 g. The COR1 images show a brightness decrease in the coronal sector where the CME propagates. We verified that this intensity reduction is due to a plasma depletion. Moreover, the combined analysis performed by the two STEREO satellites allowed us to deduce that a preexisting streamer is located along the propagation direction of the CME and disappears after the passage of the event. The coronal mass loss associated with the plasma depletion is much lower than the mass expelled from the Sun in the COR1-B data. Conversely, the COR1-A obsevations allowed us to infer that the mass of the streamer carried away from the outer corona corresponds to about half of the CME mass. The results highlight the importance of stereoscopic observations in the study of corona restructuring in the aftermath of a CME event.
Key words: Sun: activity / Sun: corona / Sun: coronal mass ejections (CMEs)
The movie associated with Fig. 3 is available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org
© ESO, 2014