Vol 16, No 1 (2016) / Sharykin

Solar flares with similar soft but different hard X-ray emissions: case and statistical studies

Ivan N. Sharykin, Alexei B. Struminsky, Ivan V. Zimovets, Wei-Qun Gan


From the Reuven Ramaty High Energy Solar Spectroscopic Imager (RHESSI) catalog we select events which have approximately the same GOES class (high C - low M or 500–1200 counts s−1 within the RHESSI 6–12 keV energy band), but with different maximal energies of detected hard X-rays. The selected events are subdivided into two groups: (1) flares with X-ray emissions observed by RHESSI up to only 50 keV and (2) flares with hard X-ray emission observed also above 50 keV. The main task is to understand observational peculiarities of these two flare groups. We use RHESSI X-ray data to obtain spectral and spatial information in order to find differences between selected groups. Spectra and images are analyzed in detail for six events (case study). For a larger number of samples (85 and 28 flares in the low-energy and high-energy groups respectively) we only make some generalizations. In spectral analysis we use the thick-target model for hard X-ray emission and one temperature assumption for thermal soft X-ray emission. RHESSI X-ray images are used for determination of flare region sizes. Although thermal and spatial properties of these two groups of flares are not easily distinguishable, power law indices of hard X-rays show significant differences. Events from the high-energy group generally have a harder spectrum. Therefore, the efficiency of chromospheric evaporation is not sensitive to the hardness of nonthermal electron spectra but rather depends on the total energy flux of nonthermal electrons.


Sun: flares — Sun: X-rays — gamma rays

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.1088/1674–4527/16/1/005


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