HAO Colloquium - Graham Kerr, NASA GSFC

Field-Aligned Modelling of Solar Flares: Testing Theories and Interpreting Observations

With the fortune of increasingly high-quality data comes the need for state-of-the-art numerical models to forward model observables for model-data comparisons. These are required to both help extract and interpret what information observations carry, and (most importantly) to determine if theories stands up to the stubborn reality of observations. Field-aligned (i.e. 1D) loop models of solar flares allow us to study the detailed microphysics and complex feedback between radiation and hydrodynamics at the high spatial and temporal resolution demanded during flares. This is particularly true of the solar chromosphere and transition region, where the bulk of flare energy is deposited, and where the majority of the enhanced radiative output originates. However, flares are, of course, 3D phenomena, so how can we bridge the gap from 1D to 3D as we work towards fully 3D flare models? In this colloquium I will (1) summarise the current flare loop models and modelling approach, (2) show, using white light solar flares (WLFs), how critically attacking models with observations can indicate if new ingredients to theory are required, and (3) showcase recent efforts that aim to model optically thin emission that includes 3D effects by using a detailed 1D loop simulation to build a data-constrained flare arcade.

Date and time: 
Wednesday, February 12, 2020 - 2:00pm to 3:00pm