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Open and disconnected magnetic field lines within coronal mass ejections in the solar wind: Evidence for 3-dimensional reconnectionMeasurements of suprathermal electron fluxes in the solar wind at energies greater than approximatley 80 eV indicate that magnetic field lines within coronal mass ejections. CMEs, near and beyond 1 AU are normally connected to the Sun at both ends. However, a preliminary reexamination of events previously identified as CMEs in the ISEE 3 data reveals that about 1/4 of all such events contain limited regions where field lines appear to be either connected to the Sun at only one end or connected to the outer heliosphere at both ends. Similar intervals of open and disconnected field lines within CMEs have been identified in the Ulysses observations. We believe that these anomalous field topologies within CMEs are most naturally interpreted in terms of 3-dimensional reconnection behind CMEs close to the Sun. Such reconnection also provides a natural explanation both for the flux rope topology of many CMEs as well as the coronal loops formed during long-duration solar soft X ray events. Although detailed numerical simulations of 3-dimensional reconnection behind CMEs are not yet available, such simulations have been done for the qualitatively similar geometry that prevails within the geomagnetic tail. Those simulations of plasmoid formation in the geomagnetic tail do produce the mixture of field topologies within plasmoids discussed here for CMEs.
Document ID
19960021313
Document Type
Conference Paper
Authors
Gosling, J. T. (Los Alamos National Lab. NM United States)
Birn, J. (Los Alamos National Lab. NM United States)
McComas, D. J. (Los Alamos National Lab. NM United States)
Phillips, J. L. (Los Alamos National Lab. NM United States)
Hesse, M. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD United States)
Date Acquired
August 17, 2013
Publication Date
June 30, 1995
Publication Information
Publication: International Solar Wind 8 Conference
Subject Category
Solar Physics
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.