Browsing by Subject "magnetohydrodynamics (MHD)"

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  • Micelotta, Elisabetta R.; Juvela, Mika; Padoan, Paolo; Ristorcelli, Isabelle; Alina, Dana; Malinen, Johanna (2021)
    Context. The all-sky survey from the Planck space telescope has revealed that thermal emission from Galactic dust is polarized on scales ranging from the whole sky down to the inner regions of molecular clouds. Polarized dust emission can therefore be used as a probe for magnetic fields on different scales. In particular, the analysis of the relative orientation between the density structures and the magnetic field projected on the plane of the sky can provide information on the role of magnetic fields in shaping the structure of molecular clouds where star formation takes place.Aims. The orientation of the magnetic field with respect to the density structures has been investigated using different methods. The goal of this paper is to explicitly compare two of these: the Rolling Hough Transform (RHT) and the gradient technique (GRAD).Methods. We generated synthetic surface brightness maps at 353 GHz (850 mu m) via magnetohydrodynamic simulations. We applied RHT and GRAD to two morphologically different regions identified in our maps. Region 1 is dominated by a dense and thick filamentary structure with some branches, while Region 2 includes a thinner filament with denser knots immersed in a more tenuous medium. Both methods derive the relative orientation between the magnetic field and the density structures, to which we applied two statistics, the histogram of relative orientation and the projected Rayleigh statistic, to quantify the variations of the relative orientation as a function of column density.Results. Both methods find areas with significant signal, and these areas are substantially different. In terms of relative orientations, in all our considered cases the predominant orientation of the density structures is perpendicular to the direction of the magnetic field. When the methods are applied to the same selected areas the results are consistent with each other in Region 2 but show some noticeable differences in Region 1. In Region 1, RHT globally finds the relative orientation becoming more perpendicular for increasing column density, while GRAD, applied at the same resolution as RHT, gives the opposite trend. These disparities are caused by the intrinsic differences in the methods and in the structures that they select.Conclusions. Our results indicate that the interpretation of the relative orientation between the magnetic field and density structures should take into account the specificity of the methods used to determine such orientation. The combined use of complementary techniques such as RHT and GRAD provides more complete information, which can be advantageously used to better understand the physical mechanisms operating in magnetized molecular clouds.
  • Asvestari, Eleanna; Pomoell, Jens; Kilpua, Emilia; Good, Simon; Chatzistergos, Theodosios; Temmer, Manuela; Palmerio, Erika; Poedts, Stefaan; Magdalenic, Jasmina (2021)
    Context. Coronal mass ejections (CMEs) are a manifestation of the Sun's eruptive nature. They can have a great impact on Earth, but also on human activity in space and on the ground. Therefore, modelling their evolution as they propagate through interplanetary space is essential. Aims. EUropean Heliospheric FORecasting Information Asset (EUHFORIA) is a data-driven, physics-based model, tracing the evolution of CMEs through background solar wind conditions. It employs a spheromak flux rope, which provides it with the advantage of reconstructing the internal magnetic field configuration of CMEs. This is something that is not included in the simpler cone CME model used so far for space weather forecasting. This work aims at assessing the spheromak CME model included in EUHFORIA. Methods. We employed the spheromak CME model to reconstruct a well observed CME and compare model output to in situ observations. We focus on an eruption from 6 January 2013 that was encountered by two radially aligned spacecraft, Venus Express and STEREO-A. We first analysed the observed properties of the source of this CME eruption and we extracted the CME properties as it lifted off from the Sun. Using this information, we set up EUHFORIA runs to model the event. Results. The model predicts arrival times from half to a full day ahead of the in situ observed ones, but within errors established from similar studies. In the modelling domain, the CME appears to be propagating primarily southward, which is in accordance with white-light images of the CME eruption close to the Sun. Conclusions. In order to get the observed magnetic field topology, we aimed at selecting a spheromak rotation angle for which the axis of symmetry of the spheromak is perpendicular to the direction of the polarity inversion line (PIL). The modelled magnetic field profiles, their amplitude, arrival times, and sheath region length are all affected by the choice of radius of the modelled spheromak.
  • Scolini, C.; Rodriguez, L.; Mierla, M.; Pomoell, J.; Poedts, S. (2019)
    Context. Coronal mass ejections (CMEs) are the primary source of strong space weather disturbances at Earth. Their geo-effectiveness is largely determined by their dynamic pressure and internal magnetic fields, for which reliable predictions at Earth are not possible with traditional cone CME models. Aims. We study two well-observed Earth-directed CMEs using the EUropean Heliospheric FORecasting Information Asset (EUH-FORIA) model, testing for the first time the predictive capabilities of a linear force-free spheromak CME model initialised using parameters derived from remote-sensing observations. Methods. Using observation-based CME input parameters, we performed magnetohydrodynamic simulations of the events with EU-HFORIA, using the cone and spheromak CME models. Results. Simulations show that spheromak CMEs propagate faster than cone CMEs when initialised with the same kinematic parameters. We interpret these differences as the result of different Lorentz forces acting within cone and spheromak CMEs, which lead to different CME expansions in the heliosphere. Such discrepancies can be mitigated by initialising spheromak CMEs with a reduced speed corresponding to the radial speed only. Results at Earth provide evidence that the spheromak model improves the predictions of B (B-z) by up to 12-60 (22-40) percentage points compared to a cone model. Considering virtual spacecraft located within +/- 10 degrees around Earth, B (Bz) predictions reach 45-70% (58-78%) of the observed peak values. The spheromak model shows inaccurate predictions of the magnetic field parameters at Earth for CMEs propagating away from the Sun-Earth line. Conclusions. The spheromak model successfully predicts the CME properties and arrival time in the case of strictly Earth-directed events, while modelling CMEs propagating away from the Sun-Earth line requires extra care due to limitations related to the assumed spherical shape. The spatial variability of modelling results and the typical uncertainties in the reconstructed CME direction advocate the need to consider predictions at Earth and at virtual spacecraft located around it.
  • Padoan, Paolo; Juvela, Mika; Pan, Liubin; Haugbolle, Troels; Nordlund, Åke (2016)
    We present a comparison of molecular clouds (MCs) from a simulation of supernova (SN) driven interstellar medium (ISM) turbulence with real MCs from the Outer Galaxy Survey. The radiative transfer calculations to compute synthetic CO spectra are carried out assuming that the CO relative abundance depends only on gas density, according to four different models. Synthetic MCs are selected above a threshold brightness temperature value, T-B,T-min = 1.4 K, of the J = 1 - 0 (CO)-C-12 line, generating 16 synthetic catalogs (four different spatial resolutions and four CO abundance models), each containing up to several thousands MCs. The comparison with the observations focuses on the mass and size distributions and on the velocity-size and mass-size Larson relations. The mass and size distributions are found to be consistent with the observations, with no significant variations with spatial resolution or chemical model, except in the case of the unrealistic model with constant CO abundance. The velocity-size relation is slightly too steep for some of the models, while the mass-size relation is a bit too shallow for all models only at a spatial resolution dx approximate to 1 pc. The normalizations of the Larson relations show a clear dependence on spatial resolution, for both the synthetic and the real MCs. The comparison of the velocity-size normalization suggests that the SN rate in the Perseus arm is approximately 70% or less of the rate adopted in the simulation. Overall, the realistic properties of the synthetic clouds confirm that SN-driven turbulence can explain the origin and dynamics of MCs.
  • Verbeke, C.; Pomoell, J.; Poedts, S. (2019)
    Aims. We introduce a new model for coronal mass ejections (CMEs) that has been implemented in the magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) inner heliosphere model EUHFORIA. Utilising a linear force-free spheromak (LFFS) solution, the model provides an intrinsic magnetic field structure for the CME. As a result, the new model has the potential to predict the magnetic components of CMEs at Earth. In this paper, we present the implementation of the new model and show the capability of the new model. Methods. We present initial validation runs for the new magnetised CME model by considering the same set of events as used in the initial validation run of EUHFORIA that employed the Cone model. In particular, we have focused on modelling the CME that was responsible for creating the largest geomagnetic disturbance (Dst index). Two scenarios are discussed: one where a single magnetised CME is launched and another in which we launch all five Earth-directed CMEs that were observed during the considered time period. Four out of the five CMEs were modelled using the Cone model. Results. In the first run, where the propagation of a single magnetized CME is considered, we find that the magnetic field components at Earth are well reproduced as compared to in-situ spacecraft data. Considering a virtual spacecraft that is separated approximately seven heliographic degrees from the position of Earth, we note that the centre of the magnetic cloud is missing Earth and a considerably larger magnetic field strength can be found when shifting to that location. For the second run, launching four Cone CMEs and one LFFS CME, we notice that the simulated magnetised CME is arriving at the same time as in the corresponding full Cone model run. We find that to achieve this, the speed of the CME needs to be reduced in order to compensate for the expansion of the CME due to the addition of the magnetic field inside the CME. The reduced initial speed of the CME and the added magnetic field structure give rise to a very similar propagation of the CME with approximately the same arrival time at 1 au. In contrast to the Cone model, however, the magnetised CME is able to predict the magnetic field components at Earth. However, due to the interaction between the Cone model CMEs and the magnetised CME, the magnetic field amplitude is significantly lower than for the run using a single magnetised CME. Conclusions. We have presented the LFFS model that is able to simulate and predict the magnetic field components and the propagation of magnetised CMEs in the inner heliosphere and at Earth. We note that shifting towards a virtual spacecraft in the neighbourhood of Earth can give rise to much stronger magnetic field components. This gives the option of adding a grid of virtual spacecrafts to give a range of values for the magnetic field components.
  • Väisälä, M. S.; Gent, F. A.; Juvela, M.; Käpylä, M. J. (2018)
    Context. Efforts to compare polarization measurements with synthetic observations from magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) models have previously concentrated on the scale of molecular clouds. Aims. We extend the model comparisons to kiloparsec scales, taking into account hot shocked gas generated by supernovae and a non-uniform dynamo-generated magnetic field at both large and small scales down to 4 pc spatial resolution. Methods. We used radiative transfer calculations to model dust emission and polarization on top of MHD simulations. We computed synthetic maps of column density N-H, polarization fraction p, and polarization angle dispersion S, and studied their dependencies on important properties of MHD simulations. These include the large-scale magnetic field and its orientation, the small-scale magnetic field, and supernova-driven shocks. Results. Similar filament-like structures of S as seen in the Planck all-sky maps are visible in our synthetic results, although the smallest scale structures are absent from our maps. Supernova-driven shock fronts and S do not show significant correlation. Instead, S can clearly be attributed to the distribution of the small-scale magnetic field. We also find that the large-scale magnetic field influences the polarization properties, such that, for a given strength of magnetic fluctuation, a strong plane of the sky mean field weakens the observed S, while strengthening p. The anticorrelation of p and S, and decreasing p as a function of NH are consistent across all synthetic observations. The magnetic fluctuations follow an exponential distribution, rather than Gaussian characteristic of flows with intermittent repetitive shocks. Conclusions. The observed polarization properties and column densities are sensitive to the line-of-sight distance over which the emission is integrated. Studying synthetic maps as the function of maximum integration length will further help with the interpretation of observations. The effects of the large-scale magnetic field orientation on the polarization properties are difficult to be quantified from observations solely, but MHD models might turn out to be useful for separating the effect of the large-scale mean field.
  • Viviani, M.; Warnecke, J.; Käpylä, M. J.; Käpylä, P. J.; Olspert, N.; Cole-Kodikara, E. M.; Lehtinen, J. J.; Brandenburg, A. (2018)
    Context. Both dynamo theory and observations of stellar large-scale magnetic fields suggest a change from nearly axisymmetric configurations at solar rotation rates to nonaxisymmetric configurations for rapid rotation. Aims. We seek to understand this transition using numerical simulations. Methods. We use three-dimensional simulations of turbulent magnetohydrodynamic convection in spherical shell wedges and considered rotation rates between 1 and 31 times the solar value. Results. We find a transition from axi- to nonaxisymmetric solutions at around 1.8 times the solar rotation rate. This transition coincides with a change in the rotation profile from antisolar- to solar-like differential rotation with a faster equator and slow poles. In the solar-like rotation regime, the field configuration consists of an axisymmetric oscillatory field accompanied by an m = 1 azimuthal mode (two active longitudes), which also shows temporal variability. At slow (rapid) rotation, the axisymmetric (nonaxisymmetric) mode dominates. The axisymmetric mode produces latitudinal dynamo waves with polarity reversals, while the nonaxisymmetric mode often exhibits a slow drift in the rotating reference frame and the strength of the active longitudes changes cyclically over time between the different hemispheres. In the majority of cases we find retrograde waves, while prograde waves are more often found from observations. Most of the obtained dynamo solutions exhibit cyclic variability either caused by latitudinal or azimuthal dynamo waves. In an activity-period diagram, the cycle lengths normalized by the rotation period form two different populations as a function of rotation rate or magnetic activity level. The slowly rotating axisymmetric population lies close to what in observations is called the inactive branch, where the stars are believed to have solar-like differential rotation, while the rapidly rotating models are close to the superactive branch with a declining cycle to rotation frequency ratio and an increasing rotation rate. Conclusions. We can successfully reproduce the transition from axi- to nonaxisymmetric dynamo solutions for high rotation rates, but high-resolution simulations are required to limit the effect of rotational quenching of convection at rotation rates above 20 times the solar value.
  • Jebaraj, I. C.; Magdalenic, J.; Podladchikova, T.; Scolini, C.; Pomoell, J.; Veronig, A. M.; Dissauer, K.; Krupar, V.; Kilpua, E. K. J.; Poedts, S. (2020)
    Context. Eruptive events such as coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and flares accelerate particles and generate shock waves which can arrive at Earth and can disturb the magnetosphere. Understanding the association between CMEs and CME-driven shocks is therefore highly important for space weather studies. Aims. We present a study of the CME/flare event associated with two type II bursts observed on September 27, 2012. The aim of the study is to understand the relationship between the observed CME and the two distinct shock wave signatures. Methods. The multiwavelength study of the eruptive event (CME/flare) was complemented with radio triangulation of the associated radio emission and modelling of the CME and the shock wave employing MHD simulations. Results. We found that, although temporal association between the type II bursts and the CME is good, the low-frequency type II (LF-type II) burst occurs significantly higher in the corona than the CME and its relationship to the CME is not straightforward. The analysis of the EIT wave (coronal bright front) shows the fastest wave component to be in the southeast quadrant of the Sun. This is also the quadrant in which the source positions of the LF-type II were found to be located, probably resulting from the interaction between the shock wave and a streamer. Conclusions. The relationship between the CME/flare event and the shock wave signatures is discussed using the temporal association, as well as the spatial information of the radio emission. Further, we discuss the importance and possible effects of the frequently non-radial propagation of the shock wave.