Worksheet 4.6

Name:__________________________________

Date:__________________________________

The blob that was ejected from the solar flare later moved completely away from the Sun as a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) moving with the same speed that you calculated in Worksheet 4.5. This blob has mass and a speed, so we can calculate its kinetic energy. The formula for kinetic energy is:

KE = ½mv2
where m is mass and v is speed.

 1. The mass of the blob can be estimated by first estimating its volume and using the typical density of plasma in a coronal loop. Examine the 9th flare image in the series (23:12:50.50 UT) and estimate the diameter of the blob in kilometers. Show your work and record the number below. 2. Assume that the blob is a sphere and calculate its volume. Show all work. 3. The typical density of plasma in a coronal loop is 2 x 10-14 g/cm3. Use this value to calculate the mass of the blob. Show all work. 4. Now, calculate the kinetic energy of the blob in Joules. Show all work, and be mindful of units. 5. The actual amount of mass that was ejected from the Sun was 10 times larger than just that seen in the X-ray image. The total amount of mass ejected from the Sun was estimated by NASA scientists to be 5 x 1013 g. Calculate the kinetic energy of the CME in Joules. Show all work and be mindful of units. 6. The total amount of energy released by the flare that went into heating and accelerating matter was estimated by NASA scientists to be 2 x1023 Joules. How does this compare to the amount of kinetic energy given to the CME? How many candy bars would you have to eat to equal the total amount of energy? Show all work and be mindful of units.