Intermittent and Scale-Invariant Intensity Fluctuations in Hot Coronal Loops

J. K. Lawrence, A. C. Cadavid, D. J. Christian, D. B. Jess, G. Nigro

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


ABSTRACT BODY: To resolve outstanding questions on heating of coronal loops, we study intensity fluctuations in inter-moss portions of active region core loops as observed with AIA/SDO. The 94Å fluctuations (Figure 1) have structure on timescales shorter than radiative and conductive cooling times. Each of several strong 94Å brightenings is followed after ~8 min by a broader peak in the cooler 335Å emission. This indicates that we see emission from the hot component of the 94Å contribution function. No hotter contributions appear, and we conclude that the 94Å intensity can be used as a proxy for energy injection into the loop plasma. The probability density function of the observed 94Å intensity has 'heavy tails' that approach zero more slowly than the tails of a normal distribution. Hence, large fluctuations dominate the behavior of the system. The resulting 'intermittence' is associated with power-law or exponential scaling of the related variables, and these in turn are associated with turbulent phenomena. The intensity plots in Figure 1 resemble multifractal time series, which are common to various forms of turbulent energy dissipation. In these systems a single fractal dimension is insufficient to describe the dynamics and instead there is a spectrum of fractal dimensions that quantify the self-similar properties. Figure 2 shows the multifractal spectrum from our data to be invariant over timescales from 24 s to 6.4 min. We compare these results to outputs from theoretical energy dissipation models based on MHD turbulence, and in some cases we find substantial agreement, in terms of intermittence, multifractality and scale invariance. Figure 1. Time traces of 94A intensity in the inter-moss portions of four AR core loops. Figure 2. Multifractal spectra showing timescale invariance. The four cases of Figure 1 are included.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 01 Dec 2013




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