Solar Physics

, Volume 174, Issue 1–2, pp 175–190 | Cite as


  • Jeongwoo Lee
  • Stephen M. White
  • N. Gopalswamy
  • M. R. Kundu


Microwave emission from solar active regions at frequencies above 4 GHz is dominated by gyroresonance opacity in strong coronal magnetic fields, which allows us to use radio observations to measure coronal magnetic field strengths. In this paper we demonstrate one powerful consequence of this fact: the ability to identify coronal currents from their signatures in microwave images. Specifically, we compare potential-field (i.e., current-free) extrapolations of photospheric magnetic fields with microwave images and are able to identify regions where the potential extrapolation fails to predict the magnetic field strength required to explain the microwave images. Comparison with photospheric vector magnetic field observations indicates that the location inferred for coronal currents agrees with that implied by the presence of vertical currents in the photosphere. The location, over a neutral line exhibiting strong shear, is also apparently associated with strong heating.


Magnetic Field Magnetic Field Strength Neutral Line Vector Magnetic Field Strong Shear 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeongwoo Lee
    • 1
  • Stephen M. White
    • 1
  • N. Gopalswamy
    • 1
  • M. R. Kundu
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of AstronomyUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkU.S.A

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