Total solar eclipse day CMEs

2020/12/14

On Dec 14, 2020, a total solar eclipse was observed in the southern hemisphere in Chile and Argentina. The Mauna Loa K-Coronagraph was operating shortly after the eclipse from 17:56 until 21:20 UT with some data gaps due to poor sky conditions. During that time K-Cor observed 4 coronal mass ejections (CMEs). The first was in progress in the southeast sector of the corona (lower left portion of the K-Cor images) and appeared as a faint, wide loop.

The second CME was also in progress when K-Cor began observing. It moved more slowly and was visible in the low corona in the northeast (upper left sector of the images). This second CME contained a ‘light-bulb’ or ‘tear-drop’ shaped cavity often indicating the presence of a magnetic flux rope.

The third and fourth CMEs were prominence eruptions, occurring on the northeast limb and west limb respectively. K-Cor observations ended due to cloudy skies and captured only a few images of the west limb prominence eruption.