A Model of Coronal Holes,
STANFORD UNIV CALIF INST FOR PLASMA RESEARCH
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It has been noted that coronal holes appear to be associated with regions of diverging magnetic field in the corona. The hypothesis that coronal holes may be caused by an increased flow of energy into the solar wind resulting directly from a diverging magnetic field pattern was tested. Simple models were devised to approximate the energy flow down into the transition region and up into the solar wind as a function of the temperature, density, and rate of field line divergence in the corona. By assuming the rate of mechanical energy influx into the corona to be constant, it was then possible to solve numerically for the coronal temperature and density as a function of the rate of field line divergence. The results of these calculations demonstrate that a diverging field pattern can bring about reductions in the temperature and density at the base of the corona comparable to those observed in coronal holes.