The motion of dark striations across bright filaments in a sunspot penumbra has become an important new diagnostic of convective gas flows in penumbral filaments. The nature of these striations has, however, remained unclear. Here, we present an analysis of small-scale motions in penumbral filaments in both simulations and observations. The simulations, when viewed from above, show fine structure with dark lanes running outward from the dark core of the penumbral filaments. The dark lanes either occur preferentially on one side or alternate between both sides of the filament. We identify this fine structure with transverse (kink) oscillations of the filament, corresponding to a sideways swaying of the filament. These oscillations have periods in the range of 5-7 minutes and propagate outward and downward along the filament. Similar features are found in observed G-band intensity time series of penumbral filaments in a sunspot located near disk center obtained by the Broadband Filter Imager on board the Hinode. We also find that some filaments show dark striations moving to both sides of the filaments. Based on the agreement between simulations and observations we conclude that the motions of these striations are caused by transverse oscillations of the underlying bright filaments.
The Astrophysical Journal
- Pub Date:
- June 2012
- Sun: granulation;
- Astrophysics - Solar and Stellar Astrophysics
- Accepted for publication in Astrophysical Journal on 8th April 2012