Convective blueshifts in the solar atmosphere
I. Absolute measurements with LARS of the spectral lines at 6302 Å
Kiepenheuer-Institut für Sonnenphysik,
2 Max-Planck-Institut für Quantenoptik, Hans-Kopfermann-Strasse 1, 85748 Garching, Germany
3 Menlo Systems GmbH, Am Klopferspitz 19, 82152 Martinsried, Germany
Accepted: 22 December 2017
Context. The solar convection manifests as granulation and intergranulation at the solar surface. In the photosphere, convective motions induce differential Doppler shifts to spectral lines. The observed convective blueshift varies across the solar disk.
Aim. We focus on the impact of solar convection on the atmosphere and aim to resolve its velocity stratification in the photosphere.
Methods. We performed high-resolution spectroscopic observations of the solar spectrum in the 6302 Å range with the Laser Absolute Reference Spectrograph at the Vacuum Tower Telescope. A laser frequency comb enabled the calibration of the spectra to an absolute wavelength scale with an accuracy of 1 m s−1. We systematically scanned the quiet Sun from the disk center to the limb at ten selected heliocentric positions. The analysis included 99 time sequences of up to 20 min in length. By means of ephemeris and reference corrections, we translated wavelength shifts into absolute line-of-sight velocities. A bisector analysis on the line profiles yielded the shapes and convective shifts of seven photospheric lines.
Results. At the disk center, the bisector profiles of the iron lines feature a pronounced C-shape with maximum convective blueshifts of up to −450 m s−1 in the spectral line wings. Toward the solar limb, the bisectors change into a “\”-shape with a saturation in the line core at a redshift of +100 m s−1. The center-to-limb variation of the line core velocities shows a slight increase in blueshift when departing the disk center for larger heliocentric angles. This increase in blueshift is more pronounced for the magnetically less active meridian than for the equator. Toward the solar limb, the blueshift decreases and can turn into a redshift. In general, weaker lines exhibit stronger blueshifts.
Conclusions. Best spectroscopic measurements enabled the accurate determination of absolute convective shifts in the solar photosphere. We convolved the results to lower spectral resolution to permit a comparison with observations from other instruments.
Key words: convection / Sun: atmosphere / Sun: activity / methods: observational / techniques: spectroscopic / line: profiles
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