, Volume 123, Issue 1-3, pp 303-339
Date: 27 Oct 2006

The Pre-CME Sun

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The coronal mass ejection (CME) phenomenon occurs in closed magnetic field regions on the Sun such as active regions, filament regions, transequatorial interconnection regions, and complexes involving a combination of these. This chapter describes the current knowledge on these closed field structures and how they lead to CMEs. After describing the specific magnetic structures observed in the CME source region, we compare the substructures of CMEs to what is observed before eruption. Evolution of the closed magnetic structures in response to various photospheric motions over different time scales (convection, differential rotation, meridional circulation) somehow leads to the eruption. We describe this pre-eruption evolution and attempt to link them to the observed features of CMEs. Small-scale energetic signatures in the form of electron acceleration (signified by nonthermal radio bursts at metric wavelengths) and plasma heating (observed as compact soft X-ray brightening) may be indicative of impending CMEs. We survey these pre-eruptive energy releases using observations taken before and during the eruption of several CMEs. Finally, we discuss how the observations can be converted into useful inputs to numerical models that can describe the CME initiation.