Flare-induced changes of the photospheric magnetic field in a δ-spot deduced from ground-based observations⋆
1 Astronomical Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, 05960 Tatranská Lomnica, Slovakia
2 Leibniz Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (AIP), An der Sternwarte 16, 14482 Potsdam, Germany
3 IGAM-Kanzelhöhe Observatory, Institute of Physics, University of Graz, Universitätsplatz 5, 8010 Graz, Austria
4 Universität Potsdam, Institut für Physik und Astronomie, Karl-Liebknechtstraße 24/25, 14476 Potsdam-Golm, Germany
Received: 17 February 2017
Accepted: 5 April 2017
Aims. Changes of the magnetic field and the line-of-sight velocities in the photosphere are being reported for an M-class flare that originated at a δ-spot belonging to active region NOAA 11865.
Methods. High-resolution ground-based near-infrared spectropolarimetric observations were acquired simultaneously in two photospheric spectral lines, Fe i 10783 Å and Si i 10786 Å, with the Tenerife Infrared Polarimeter at the Vacuum Tower Telescope (VTT) in Tenerife on 2013 October 15. The observations covered several stages of the M-class flare. Inversions of the full-Stokes vector of both lines were carried out and the results were put into context using (extreme)-ultraviolet filtergrams from the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO).
Results. The active region showed high flaring activity during the whole observing period. After the M-class flare, the longitudinal magnetic field did not show significant changes along the polarity inversion line (PIL). However, an enhancement of the transverse magnetic field of approximately 550 G was found that bridges the PIL and connects umbrae of opposite polarities in the δ-spot. At the same time, a newly formed system of loops appeared co-spatially in the corona as seen in 171 Å filtergrams of the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) on board SDO. However, we cannot exclude that the magnetic connection between the umbrae already existed in the upper atmosphere before the M-class flare and became visible only later when it was filled with hot plasma. The photospheric Doppler velocities show a persistent upflow pattern along the PIL without significant changes due to the flare.
Conclusions. The increase of the transverse component of the magnetic field after the flare together with the newly formed loop system in the corona support recent predictions of flare models and flare observations.
Key words: Sun: magnetic fields / sunspots / Sun: photosphere / Sun: flares / techniques: polarimetric
The movie associated to Figs. 4 and 5 is available at http://www.aanda.org
© ESO, 2017