Fast (>700 km s-1) and slow (~400 km s-1) winds stream from the Sun, permeate the heliosphere and influence the near-Earth environment. While the fast wind is known to emanate primarily from polar coronal holes, the source of the slow wind remains unknown. Here we identify possible sites of origin using a slow solar wind source map of the entire Sun, which we construct from specially designed, full-disk observations from the Hinode satellite, and a magnetic field model. Our map provides a full-Sun observation that combines three key ingredients for identifying the sources: velocity, plasma composition and magnetic topology and shows them as solar wind composition plasma outflowing on open magnetic field lines. The area coverage of the identified sources is large enough that the sum of their mass contributions can explain a significant fraction of the mass loss rate of the solar wind.
- Pub Date:
- January 2015
- Astrophysics - Solar and Stellar Astrophysics
- Published in Nature Communications in 2015 and can be found at http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150106/ncomms6947/full/ncomms6947.html