Alfvén Wave Turbulence as a Coronal Heating Mechanism: Simultaneously Predicting the Heating Rate and the Wave-Induced Emission Line Broadening
In the present work, we test the predictions of the AWSoM model, a global extended-MHD model capable of calculating the propagation and turbulent dissipation of Alfvén waves in any magnetic topology, against high resolution spectra of the quiescent off-disk solar corona. Wave dissipation is the only heating mechanism assumed in this model. Combining 3D model results with the CHIANTI atomic database, we were able to create synthetic line-of-sight spectra which include the effects of emission line broadening due to both thermal and wave-related non-thermal motions. To the best of our knowledge this is the first time a global model is used to obtain synthetic non-thermal line broadening. We obtained a steady-state solution driven by a synoptic magnetogram and compared the synthetic spectra with SUMER observations of a quiescent area above the solar west limb extending between 1.04 and 1.34 solar radii at the equator. Both the predicted line widths and the total line fluxes were consistent with the observations for 5 different ions. Using the 3D solution, we were able to locate the region that contributes the most to the emission used for measuring electron properties; we found that region to be a pseudo-streamer, whose modeled electron temperature and density are consistent with the measured ones. We conclude that the turbulent dissipation assumed in the AWSoM model can simultaneously account for the observed heating rate and the non-dissipated wave energy observed in this region.