The small-scale temperature structure of prominences remains an outstanding question in solar physics. Theoretical models provide scenarios for how cool prominence plasma can be formed and maintained within the extreme conditions of the corona. However, knowledge of the detailed temperature structure of the prominence plasma and its evolution at small spatial and temporal scales is still lacking. The Atacama Large Millimeter/sub-millimeter Array (ALMA) provides a novel method for high spatial resolution imaging of the solar atmosphere combined with the capability of direct thermal diagnostics. The purpose of this study (Rodger et al. 2017) is to develop our understanding of the formation of the millimeter continuum in solar prominences with a view to prepare for the analysis of future ALMA prominence observations.
Figure 1. Formation of 9.0mm continuum radiation from a non-isothermal cylindrical prominence thread (Pressure 0.2 dyn/cm2). Top left panel – absorption coefficient; top right – source function; bottom left – optical thickness attenuation. Bottom right – contribution function as the product of the other three panels. The red dashed line shows the tau=1 line. The green line shows the resulting brightness temperature after integration over the line of sight.
To model solar prominences we use the 2D cylindrical ...