Canfield, R. C., and Reardon, K. P., "The eruptive flare of 15 November 1991: preflare phenomena," Solar Physics 192, 145 (1998).

Click on the image above for a larger .gif version.

Here we have one cartoony embodiment of "tether cutting," a concept introduced by Moore and Roumeliotis (Moore, R. L. and Roumeliotis, G., in "Eruptive Solar Flares" (Z. Svestka, B. V. Jackson, and M. E. Machado, eds., Lecture Notes in Physics 399, 69, 1992 - not easily accessible so I have grabbed the Canfield-Reardon cartoon version). Tether-cutting envisions the gradual rise of a filament-bearing flux rope, with increments of twist entering via elementary reconnections below the structure; this should be clearly distinguished from "break-out" in which the reconnection happens above the unstable structure. That reasonable and intelligent researchers propose such categorically opposed cartoons shows how desperate we are, and why we really need these cartoons: there is nothing else to the theory! Please note that this cartoon also conflicts with that of Melrose, which also purports to show loop-loop interaction. The distinction here is that the Melrose theory requires a fixed boundary condition in the photosphere, and the Canfield-Reardon cartoon relaxes that requirement.

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