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2 November 1998 Hard x-ray spectroscopy for proton flare prediction
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High energy interplanetary proton events can jeopardize vital military and civilian spacecraft by disrupting logical circuits and by actually damaging spacecraft electronic components. Studies of solar hard x-rays indicate that high-energy proton events observed near Earth are highly associated with an uncommon type of solar flare exhibiting temporal progressively hardening hard x-ray spectra. A hard x-ray spectrometer is being developed by the Czech Astronomical Institute to provide a test bed for evaluating this phenomenon as a possible proton-storm prediction method. The instrument is designed to measure hard x-ray spectra in a high fluence, high-energy particle background environment such as that found at geosynchronous altitude. This experiment has been selected for space flight by the DoD Space Test Program and will fly aboard the Department of Energy satellite, Multi-spectral thermal Imager, scheduled for a three year mission, beginning in late 1999. The timing of this mission, fortuitously, coincides with the experiment are: 1) to evaluate the efficacy of this type of solar instrument in predicting interplanetary proton storms; 2) to study the high-energy physics of solar flares in concert with the premier flight of the NOAA soft x-ray imaging telescope, SXI, on the GOES 12 weather satellite and other solar mission. If the first goal is demonstrated by this mission, continuous monitoring of the Sun for proton events could become operational from geo-synchronous orbit during solar cycle 24.
© (1998) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Howard A. Garcia, Frantisek Farnik, and Alan L. Kiplinger "Hard x-ray spectroscopy for proton flare prediction", Proc. SPIE 3442, Missions to the Sun II, (2 November 1998);


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