Stokes Inversion Techniques for the SOLIS-VSM


The Vector Spectromagnetograph (VSM) instrument of the Synoptic Optical Long-term Investigations of the Sun (SOLIS) project will begin operation in 2002 and provide a 25 year record of synoptic solar observations. The 50-cm aperture VSM will provide daily full- disk photospheric vector and high sensitivity longitudinal magnetograms. In addition, the VSM will produce daily full-disk chormospheric longitudinal magnetograms, along with 1083 nm equivalent width images. Current data transmission and storage resources are such that the reduction of VSM data will be performed at the observing site on Kitt Peak. Reduced data products will be transmitted via a DS3 link from Kitt Peak to the National Solar Observatory’s digital archive in Tucson. During a typical observing day, three full-disk photospheric vector magnetograms will be available over the web in two stages: first, as a ``quick-look’’ product within 10 minutes of data acquisition, and then as a full Milne-Eddington (ME) inversion product within 24 hours of each observation. The quick-look parameters will include estimates of the magnetic field strength, azimuth and inclination based on Auer, Heasley, House (1977, Solar Physics 55, p. 47). The high-precision vector products will be determined with the High Altitude Observatory ME inversion technique implemented by Skumanich and Lites (1987, ApJ, 322, p.473). The flexible design of the VSM data handling system can incorporate future improvements under consideration (e.g., principal component analysis). However, since the original Stokes profiles observed will not be archived, a retrospective reduction of VSM data will not be possible. Quick- look and full ME inversion results are compared using simulated VSM Stokes profile data based on Kitt Peak Vacuum Telescope magnetograms. This research was supported in part by the Office of Naval Research Grant N00014-91-J-1040.

American Astronomical Society Meeting Abstracts #200