The magnetic Rayleigh-Taylor instability in Solar Prominences

Dr Andrew Hillier (University of Exeter)

Thursday 2nd February, 2017 14:00-15:00 Maths 515


Observations by the Hinode satellite of quiescent prominences have revealed in great detail a wide range of dynamic phenomena, including of plumes rising through the prominence material. These plumes form from the classic density inversion that is associated with the Rayleigh-Taylor instability. Due to the high spatial and temporal resolution, these plumes present arguably the best observed example of this instability, making them a prime target to deepen our understanding of magnetised fluid dynamics. In this talk I will introduce the observations of this instability and show my numerical work on the formation of plumes in a prominence model. These results tell us about the structure of the plumes and their role in driving the dynamic flows of prominences. Following from this, I will introduce how the nonlinear modelling of the plumes can be used to investigate the strength of the magnetic field in a prominence.

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