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Solar Prominences

18 February 2019

One tends to think in terms of the study of electro-magnetic prominences on the face of the Sun as a very recent affair but this is not so. They have a long history as astronomers have been looking at these prominences in telescopes for generations. For example, in the Astrophysical Journal 149 (1967) page 269 … we have an article by William I Thompson and Donald E Billings, 'Observations Bearing on the Kippenhahn-Schluter Quiescent Prominence Model' which deals directly with solar prominences. Back in 1946 Evans (and de Jager in 1959) concluded the only force capable of holding prominences above the photosphere and protecting them from evaporation in the very hot corona are electro magnetic. This idea led to the Kippenhahn and Schluter (1957) theory which proposed that quiescent prominence material lies in a magnetic valley supported by magnetic field force against solar gravity etc. The article goes on to analyse the Kippenhahn-Schluter theory with some interesting observations. If anyone wishes to read the article in more detail drop a line via the contact email address on this web site.

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