(searched for: doi:10.3847/1538-4357/ac4784)
The Astrophysical Journal, Volume 933; https://doi.org/10.3847/1538-4357/ac7398
In coronal loop modeling, it is commonly assumed that the loops are semicircular with a uniform cross-sectional area. However, observed loops are rarely semicircular, and extrapolations of the magnetic field show that the field strength decreases with height, implying that the cross-sectional area expands with height. We examine these two assumptions directly, to understand how they affect the hydrodynamic and radiative response of short, hot loops to strong, impulsive electron beam heating events. Both the magnitude and rate of area expansion impact the dynamics directly, and an expanding cross section significantly lengthens the time for a loop to cool and drain, increases upflow durations, and suppresses sound waves. The standard T ∼ n 2 relation for radiative cooling does not hold with expanding loops, which cool with relatively little draining. An increase in the eccentricity of loops, on the other hand, only increases the draining timescale, and is a minor effect in general. Spectral line intensities are also strongly impacted by the variation in the cross-sectional area because they depend on both the volume of the emitting region as well as the density and ionization state. With a larger expansion, the density is reduced, so the lines at all heights are relatively reduced in intensity, and because of the increase of cooling times, the hottest lines remain bright for significantly longer. Area expansion is critical to accurate modeling of the hydrodynamics and radiation, and observations are needed to constrain the magnitude, rate, and location of the expansion—or lack thereof.
Space Weather, Volume 20; https://doi.org/10.1029/2021sw003012