Fecha de publicación: 2012.
Context. A large amount of magnetized plasma is frequently ejected from the Sun as coronal mass ejections (CMEs). Some of these ejections are detected in the solar wind as magnetic clouds (MCs) that have flux rope signatures. Aims. Magnetic clouds are structures that typically expand in the inner heliosphere. We derive the expansion properties of MCs in the outer heliosphere from one to five astronomical units to compare them with those in the inner heliosphere. Methods. We analyze MCs observed by the Ulysses spacecraft using in situ magnetic field and plasma measurements. The MC boundaries are defined in the MC frame after defining the MC axis with a minimum variance method applied only to the flux rope structure. As in the inner heliosphere, a large fraction of the velocity profile within MCs is close to a linear function of time. This is indicative of a self-similar expansion and a MC size that locally follows a power-law of the solar distance with an exponent called ζ. We derive the value of ζ from the in situ velocity data. Results. We analyze separately the non-perturbed MCs (cases showing a linear velocity profile almost for the full event), and perturbed MCs (cases showing a strongly distorted velocity profile). We find that non-perturbed MCs expand with a similar non-dimensional expansion rate (ζ = 1.05 ± 0.34), i.e. slightly faster than at the solar distance and in the inner heliosphere (ζ = 0.91 ± 0.23). The subset of perturbed MCs expands, as in the inner heliosphere, at a significantly lower rate and with a larger dispersion (ζ = 0.28 ± 0.52) as expected from the temporal evolution found in numerical simulations. This local measure of the expansion also agrees with the distribution with distance of MC size, mean magnetic field, and plasma parameters. The MCs interacting with a strong field region, e.g. another MC, have the most variable expansion rate (ranging from compression to over-expansion). © 2012 ESO.
Afiliación de los autores: Gulisano, A.M. Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales; Argentina.
Afiliación de los autores: Dasso, S. Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales; Argentina.
Palabras claves: Interplanetary medium; Magnetic fields; Magnetohydrodynamics (MHD); Solar wind; Sun: coronal mass ejections (CMEs); Astronomical units; Coronal mass ejection; Expansion properties; Expansion rate; Flux ropes; Heliospheres; In-situ; Interplanetary medium; Linear functions; Linear velocity; Magnetic clouds; Magnetized plasmas; Mean magnetic field; Minimum variance; Outer heliosphere; Plasma measurement; Plasma parameter; Power-law; Self-similar; Strong field; Sun: coronal mass ejection; Temporal evolution; Ulysses spacecraft; Velocity profiles; Magnetic fields; Magnetohydrodynamics; Magnetoplasma; Rope; Solar system; Solar wind; Velocity.
Repositorio: Biblioteca Digital (UBA-FCEN). Universidad Nacional de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales