Presentation #106.03 in the session “Solar Physics Division (SPD): Instruments and Simulations”.
Coronal heating, chromospheric heating, and the heating & acceleration of the solar wind, are well-known problems in solar physics. Additionally, knowledge of the magnetic energy that powers solar flares and coronal mass ejections, important drivers of space weather, is handicapped by imperfect determination of the magnetic field in the sun’s atmosphere. Extrapolation of photospheric magnetic measurements into the corona is fraught with difficulties and uncertainties, partly due to the vastly different plasma beta between the photosphere and the corona. Better results in understanding the coronal magnetic field should be derived from measurements of the magnetic field in the chromosphere. To that end, we are pursuing quantitative determination of the magnetic field in the chromosphere, where plasma beta transitions from greater than unity to less than unity, via ultraviolet spectropolarimetry. The CLASP2 mission, flown on a sounding rocket in April 2019, succeeded in measuring all four Stokes polarization parameters in UV spectral lines formed by singly ionized Magnesium and neutral Manganese. Because these ions produce spectral lines under different conditions, CLASP2 thus was able to quantify the magnetic field properties at multiple heights in the chromosphere simultaneously, as shown in the recent paper by Ishikawa et al. In this presentation we will report the findings of CLASP2, demonstrating the variation of magnetic fields along a track on the solar surface and as a function of height in the chromosphere; and we will illustrate what is next for the CLASP missions and the demonstration of UV spectropolarimetry in the solar chromosphere.