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Synoptic Solar Cycle 24 in Corona, Chromosphere, and Photosphere Seen by the Solar Dynamics Observatory

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The Solar Dynamics Observatory provides multiwavelength imagery from extreme ultraviolet (EUV) to visible light as well as magnetic-field measurements. These data enable us to study the nature of solar activity in different regions of the Sun, from the interior to the corona. For solar-cycle studies, synoptic maps provide a useful way to represent global activity and evolution by extracting a central meridian band from sequences of full-disk images over a full solar Carrington rotation (≈ 27.3 days). We present the global evolution during Solar Cycle 24 from 20 May 2010 to 31 August 2013 (CR 2097 – CR 2140), using synoptic maps constructed from full-disk, line-of-sight magnetic-field imagery and EUV imagery (171 Å, 193 Å, 211 Å, 304 Å, and 335 Å). The synoptic maps have a resolution of 0.1 degree in longitude and steps of 0.001 in sine of latitude. We studied the axisymmetric and non-axisymmetric structures of solar activity using these synoptic maps. To visualize the axisymmetric development of Cycle 24, we generated time–latitude (also called butterfly) images of the solar cycle in all of the wavelengths, by averaging each synoptic map over all longitudes, thus compressing it to a single vertical strip, and then assembling these strips in time order. From these time–latitude images we observe that during the ascending phase of Cycle 24 there is a very good relationship between the integrated magnetic flux and the EUV intensity inside the zone of sunspot activities. We observe a North–South asymmetry of the EUV intensity in high-latitudes. The North–South asymmetry of the emerging magnetic flux developed and resulted in a consequential asymmetry in the timing of the polar magnetic-field reversals.

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Data courtesy of NASA/SDO and the AIA and HMI science teams. Thanks to Y. Ponyavin for help in preparing AIA data. We are grateful to P.H. Scherrer for useful comments.

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Correspondence to E. Benevolenskaya.

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The Many Scales of Solar Activity in Solar Cycle 24 as seen by SDO

Guest Editors: Aaron Birch, Mark Cheung, Andrew Jones, and W. Dean Pesnell

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Benevolenskaya, E., Slater, G. & Lemen, J. Synoptic Solar Cycle 24 in Corona, Chromosphere, and Photosphere Seen by the Solar Dynamics Observatory . Sol Phys 289, 3371–3379 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11207-014-0532-8

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  • Solar cycle, observations
  • Magnetic fields, photosphere
  • Magnetic fields, corona