The effect of the solar corona on the attenuation of small-amplitude prominence oscillations
I. Longitudinal magnetic field
Departament de Física, Universitat de les Illes Balears, 07122 Palma de Mallorca, Spain e-mail: [roberto.soler;ramon.oliver;dfsjlb0]@uib.es
Accepted: 8 June 2007
Context.One of the typical features shown by observations of solar prominence oscillations is that they are damped in time and that the values of the damping times are usually between one and three times the corresponding oscillatory period. However, the mechanism responsible for the attenuation is still not well-known.
Aims.Thermal conduction, optically thin or thick radiation and heating are taken into account in the energy equation, and their role on the attenuation of prominence oscillations is evaluated.
Methods.The dispersion relation for linear non-adiabatic magnetoacoustic waves is derived considering an equilibrium made of a prominence plasma slab embedded in an unbounded corona. The magnetic field is orientated along the direction parallel to the slab axis and has the same strength in all regions. By solving the dispersion relation for a fixed wavenumber, a complex oscillatory frequency is obtained, and the period and the damping time are computed.
Results.The effect of conduction and radiation losses is different for each magnetoacoustic mode and depends on the wavenumber. In the observed range of wavelengths the internal slow mode is attenuated by radiation from the prominence plasma, the fast mode by the combination of prominence radiation and coronal conduction and the external slow mode by coronal conduction. The consideration of the external corona is of paramount importance in the case of the fast and external slow modes, whereas it does not affect the internal slow modes at all. When a thinner slab representing a filament thread is considered, the fast mode is less attenuated whereas both internal and external slow modes are not affected.
Conclusions.Non-adiabatic effects are efficient damping mechanisms for magnetoacoustic modes, and the values of the obtained damping times are compatible with those observed.
Key words: Sun: oscillations / Sun: magnetic fields / Sun: corona / Sun: prominences
© ESO, 2007