Open Access

Flares and the chromosphere

Earth, Planets and Space200961:BF03352926

Received: 2 December 2007

Accepted: 31 August 2008

Published: 29 May 2009


The chromosphere (the link between the photosphere and the corona) plays a crucial role in flare and CME development. In analogies between flares and magnetic substorms, it is normally identified with the ionosphere, but we argue that the correspondence is not exact. Much of the important physics of this interesting region remains to be explored. We discuss chromospheric flares in the context of recent observations of white-light flares and hard X-rays as observed by TRACE and RHESSI, respectively. We interpret key features of these observations as results of the stepwise changes a flare produces in the photospheric magnetic field.

Key words

Solar flares solar chromosphere solar corona Alfvén waves