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Tuesday 08 Sep 2015Prominences, the magnetic Rayleigh-Taylor instability and what we can learn about the prominence magnetic field

Dr Andrew Hillier - University of Cambridge

Laver LT6 14:30-16:00

Observations by the Hinode satellite of quiescent prominences have revealed in great detail the dynamics of plumes rising through the prominence material. These plumes, created by the magnetic Rayleigh-Taylor instability, rise through the prominence material. In this talk I will show how the growth rate for the linear instability and the nonlinear dynamics of the rising plume in the nonlinear regime provide diagnostic tools for investigating both the plasma beta and the magnetic field direction in the prominence. These methods will be compared to observations of plumes with both Doppler velocity and magnetic field measurements (both strength and direction) by Orozco Suarez et al (2014) to confirm their validity. It is through application of these new methods that I believe we will be able to make great strides in understanding the role of the magnetic field in the small-scale dynamics of quiescent prominences without the need for complex polarization measurements.

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