Physics Dept Seminar




March 2, Monday


Solar Energetic Particles and Their Forecast




Dr. Lulu Zhao

Florida Institute of Technology

(Theoretical Solar Physics, Host: Cao)  


Time: 11:45 am - 12:45 pm with 11:30 am tea time

Room: ECE 202


Solar flares and coronal mass ejections are the most powerful solar explosive events occurred on the Sun. In large solar flares, a wide range of electromagnetic waves ranging from the kilometric radio wave to the Gamma-rays are released in a short period of time and a gigantic amount of ionized gas is ejected in the coronal mass ejections. In those processes, solar energetic particles can be accelerated to near-relativistic energies and injected into the interplanetary space. When traveling in the interplanetary space, they impose a serious radiation hazard to human lives on the earth, the orbiting astronauts, spacecraft, and our future space exploration missions. However, the underlying acceleration mechanisms in those events and the particles’ transport process from the sun to the interplanetary space are still under debate. I investigate the behaviors of those energetic particles with observational analysis, and model their behavior using numerical simulations. In particular, I modeled the acceleration and transport process of energetic particles by solving the Fokker-Planck equation numerically and evaluate the temporal and spatial distribution profiles, energy spectra, and element abundances of energetic particles with the measurement made by various spacecraft. Because of their great impact to the space radiation environment and the growing demand for space travel and exploration, a successful forecast of the occurrence and flux of solar energetic particles is urgent. Both numerical models and machine learning techniques are utilized in my current approaches to predict the occurrence and flux of solar energetic particles.