Online lecturer and mentor: Manuela Temmer (Institute of Physics, University of Graz, Austria)
On-site assistant: Rositsa Miteva (IANAO – BAS, Bulgaria)
Space Weather is an important issue of global matter. Eruptive flare events, leading to coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and solar energetic particles may damage satellites, enhance radiation doses in the Earth’s atmosphere, or even cause power outages at the Earth’s surface. Today many international groups perform research and develop Space Weather forecasting services based on the knowledge of the physical processes underlying these Space Weather phenomena. However, we are far from understanding all these processes. When does an active region erupt, how is its magnetic connectivity to Earth, how fast do high speed stream structures emerge from coronal holes, where is the magnetic open flux located, and how do CMEs interact with the solar wind and influence their propagation behavior?
This overview talk covers and discusses our recent understanding of the physical processes about the initiation and propagation of CMEs, SEPs, evolution of solar wind structures, their impact at Earth’s atmospheric layers and the caveats in reliably forecasting Space Weather.
On-site assistant: Rositsa Miteva
Test your skills on forecasting CMEs:
Use the NASA STEREO-cat tool to derive the 3D geometry for a CME of your choice (select one from CDAW database – which time range is valid for using STEREO data?) and its kinematics up to 20Rs from the Sun. Feed the DBEM CME propagation tool with the derived parameter values and calculate the transit time and impact speed of the CME at Earth.
Use OMNI data and plot plasma and magnetic field solar wind in-situ data. Check whether the CME event actually hit Earth (cross-check with the list from Richardson & Cane). If yes, define the CME structure from the data, and give start and end time of the disturbance, as well as start and end time of the magnetic ejecta region. Compare your model results with real measurements.
Based on the results answer the following questions:
● Is the transit time/speed correct? How large are the uncertainties?
● What does DBEM forecast – shock-sheath or magnetic CME structure? How fast was the solar wind in which the CME was propagating in?
● Can you lower the uncertainties in the forecast and come closer to the real measurements by changing some of the model parameters? In which range you might change parameters to stay within physically meaningful limits?
● Add plots and describe your results