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Why is the sun's magnetic reconnection effect many orders of magnitude faster than predicted by standard models?

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    $\begingroup$ Do you have a link or reference for either observations of the timescale of magnetic reconnection on the sun or to predictions by "standard models"? $\endgroup$
    – zephyr
    Oct 18, 2016 at 19:36
  • $\begingroup$ @zephyr I'm guessing he read about this on wikipedia. Pretty sure I did. The short answer to OP's question is "If we knew the answer, then we'd have a new standard model and then the reconnection speed would be nicely comparable to what's predicted by standard models". I think the relevant wikipedia article lists a few areas of research that may explain some or all of the discrepancy. Can't remember what the page is, though. $\endgroup$ Oct 19, 2016 at 1:09
  • $\begingroup$ The typical models of magnetic reconnection do not account for the extra resistivity that results from small-scale electromagnetic waves, which can be upwards of ~12-15 orders of magnitude larger than that caused by Coulomb collisions. $\endgroup$ Jan 17, 2017 at 15:56

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We don't know for sure.

If we knew the answer, then we'd have a new standard model and then the reconnection speed would be nicely comparable to what's predicted. (zibadawa timmy)

However, the typical models of magnetic reconnection do not account for the extra resistivity that results from small-scale electromagnetic waves, which can be upwards of ~12-15 orders of magnitude larger than that caused by Coulomb collisions. (honeste vivere)

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    $\begingroup$ converted comments to community wiki $\endgroup$
    – James K
    Jun 11, 2017 at 19:49

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