Quasi-periodic pulsations with periods that change depending on whether the pulsations have thermal or nonthermal components
1 Key Laboratory for Dark Matter and Space Science, Purple Mountain Observatory, CAS, Nanjing 210008, PR China
2 Key Laboratory of Modern Astronomy and Astrophysics (Nanjing University), Ministry of Education, Nanjing 210093, PR China
Received: 9 October 2016
Accepted: 8 December 2016
Context. Quasi-periodic pulsations (QPPs) typically display periodic and regular peaks in the light curves during the flare emissions. Sometimes, QPPs show multiple periods at the same wavelength. However, changing periods in various channels are rare.
Aims. We report QPPs in a solar flare on 2014 October 27. They showed a period change that depended on whether thermal or nonthermal components were included. The flare was simultaneously observed by many instruments.
Methods. Using the fast Fourier transform (FFT), we decomposed the light curves at multiple wavelengths into slowly varying and rapidly varying signals. Then we identified the QPPs as the regular and periodic peaks from the rapidly varying signals. The periods are derived with the wavelet method and confirmed based on the FFT spectra of the rapidly varying signals.
Results. We find a period of ~50 s from the thermal emissions during the impulsive phase of the flare, that is, in the soft X-ray bands. At the same time, a period of about 100 s is detected from the nonthermal emissions, such as hard X-ray and microwave channels. The period ratio is exactly 2.0, which might be due to the modulations of the magnetic reconnection rate by the fundamental and harmonic modes of magnetohydrodynamic waves. Our results further show that the ~100 s period is present over a broad wavelength, such as hard X-rays, extreme-UV/UV, and microwave emissions, indicating the periodic magnetic reconnection in this flare.
Conclusions. To our knowledge, this is the first report about period changes from thermal to nonthermal components in a single flare that occur at almost the same time. This new observational finding could be a challenge to the theory of flare QPPs.
Key words: Sun: flares / Sun: oscillations / Sun: radio radiation / Sun: UV radiation / Sun: X-rays, gamma rays
© ESO, 2016