The magnetic field energy is converted into kinetic and thermal energy, which is then transferred to the spicules, pushing up through the chromosphere to the outermost layer of the Sun's atmosphere, the corona.
The researchers also used images captured by the NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) spacecraft in the extreme ultraviolet (EUV) spectrum to measure how energy was being transferred in the upper layers of the Sun's atmosphere. This information was added to observations from BBSO's Goode Solar Telescope, which clearly showed that when magnetic fields with opposite polarities reconnect in the Sun's lower atmosphere, these jets of plasma are powerfully ejected.
Those images confirmed that spicules could reach temperatures of around 1 million degrees Celsius (1.8 million degrees Fahrenheit). That burst of high energy might well be enough to heat the corona to the high temperatures that have been recorded up there.
Key to all this crucial data gathering is the high-resolution pictures possible with the BBSO, offering up levels of detail that haven't been possible before. As our space-observing technology improves, more secrets about the Sun should be unlocked.
Article Source: www.sciencealert.com
Image A multi-layered view of solar spicules Credit: New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT)