Aulanier, G., Pariat, E., Démoulin, P., and Devore, C.R., "Slip-Running Reconnection in Quasi-Separatrix Layers," Solar Phys. 238, 347 (2006).

With this cartoon, for the first time in our Archive, we introduce a movie! (5.4 MB)

The term "slip-running" is evocative and graceful, the Archivist thinks, wondering whether it's the direct translation of a nice French term, or whether a felicitous use of English directly. Or maybe both. In any case it is a new take on an old scheme, the idea of large-scale magnetic reconnection as a source of flare energy. The paper argues that the point of reconnection - modeled, of course, with no regard to the microphysics! - can slide along super-Alfvenically, sort of like a superluminal expansion. Maybe so, but the movie clearly takes liberties with the concept of the field line, since its motion can only be defined in terms of the plasma associated with it. So the apparent motions in the movie are more like a conflagration wave than a physical motion.

October 2, 2009

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