Volume 86, Number 3, May 2009
Article Number 39001
Number of page(s) 4
Section Geophysics, Astronomy and Astrophysics
Published online 18 May 2009
EPL, 86 (2009) 39001
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/86/39001

A new paradigm for solar coronal heating

J. Vranjes and S. Poedts

K. U. Leuven, Center for Plasma Astrophysics - Celestijnenlaan 200B, 3001 Leuven, Belgium, EU and Leuven Mathematical Modeling and Computational Science Center (LMCC) - Leuven, Belgium, EU

received 31 March 2009; accepted in final form 20 April 2009; published May 2009
published online 18 May 2009

The solar coronal heating problem refers to the question why the temperature of the Sun's corona is more than two orders of magnitude higher than that of its surface. Almost 70 years after the discovery, this puzzle is still one of the major challenges in astrophysics. The current basic paradigm of coronal heating is unable to explain all the observational features of heating. Here we argue that a new paradigm is required to solve the puzzle in a self-consistent manner. The alternative approach is based on the kinetic theory of drift waves. We show that, with qualitative and quantitative arguments, the drift waves have the potential to satisfy all coronal heating requirements.

96.60.-j - Solar physics.
96.60.P- - Corona.
52.35.Kt - Drift waves.

© EPLA 2009