September 16, 2021


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The sun has surprised scientists for more than 20 years.  Now they have solved the mystery of its atmosphere

The sun has surprised scientists for more than 20 years. Now they have solved the mystery of its atmosphere

In 1998, astronomers announced that the chromosphere, one of the layers of the atmosphere of our star, was practically not magnetized. It is possible that scientists from the Italian IRSOL and the Spanish IAC have found an explanation for this paradox.

Arrangements available on this subject in pages physical review messages, Describe how researchers were able to study the magnetic fields within the Sun’s chromosphere. The first disturbance in this matter appeared thanks to the tool Zurich Imaging Polarmeter (ZIMPOL), which led to the detection of linear polarization on the so-called line D1. It was very surprising – according to the rules that govern quantum mechanics – that such polarization did not occur there.

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A research team led by Ernest Alsina Pallister, Lucia Pelosi and Javier Trujillo Bueno decided to solve the puzzle by performing highly sophisticated polarization modeling on the D1 line. This is an important achievement, if only because signals related to polarization can provide information about the magnetic fields that occur in our star’s chromosphere.

The sun has an atmosphere, and the chromosphere is one of its layers

The chromosphere lies between the photosphere and the corona and may be the key to explaining the conditions under which solar emission occurs, among other things. These types of eruptions on the surface of the Sun can have a serious impact on human civilization due to so-called coronal mass ejections (CMEs) emitting solar radiation that can disrupt satellites, electronic devices and electrical grids.

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The magnetic field is known to be the main driving force behind the astonishing activity of the solar chromosphere, but our empirical knowledge of its intensity and geometry remains largely unsatisfactory. The solution to the long-term D1 solar polarization paradox validates the current quantum theory of spectral line polarization and opens new possibilities for studying solar atmospheric magnetism in the current new age of large aperture solar telescopes.

The study authors explained

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