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Exploring the potential of microwave diagnostics in SEP forecasting: The occurrence of SEP events View all abstracts by submitter

Karl-Ludwig Klein   Submitted: 2017-06-03 01:59

Solar energetic particles (SEPs), especially protons and heavy ions, may be a space-weather hazard when they impact spacecraft and the terrestrial atmosphere. Forecasting schemes have been developed, which use earlier signatures of particle acceleration to predict the arrival of solar protons and ions in the space environment of the Earth. The UMASEP (University of MAlaga Solar particle Event Predictor) scheme forecasts the occurrence and the importance of an SEP event based on combined observations of soft X-rays, their time derivative and protons above 10 MeV at geosynchronous orbit. We explore the possibility to replace the derivative of the soft X-ray time history with the microwave time history in the UMASEP scheme. To this end we construct a continuous time series of observations for a 13-month period from December 2011 to December 2012 at two microwave frequencies, 4.995 and 8.8 GHz, using data from the four Radio Solar Telescope Network (RSTN) patrol stations of the US Air Force, and feed this time series to the UMASEP prediction scheme. During the selected period the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES) detected nine SEP events related to activity in the western solar hemisphere. We show that the SEP forecasting using microwaves has the same probability of detection as the method using soft X-rays, but no false alarm in the considered period, and a slightly increased warning time. A detailed analysis of the missed events is presented. We conclude that microwave patrol observations improve SEP forecasting schemes that employ soft X-rays. High-quality microwave data available in real time appear as a significant addition to our ability to predict SEP occurrence.

Authors: Pietro Zucca, Marlon Núñez and Karl-Ludwig Klein
Projects: None

Publication Status: Published in Journal of Space Weather and Space Climate 7, A13 (2017)
Last Modified: 2017-06-07 13:05
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