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Tracking CMEs using data from the Solar Stormwatch project; observing deflections and other properties

Jones, S. R., Barnard, L. A. ORCID:, Scott, C. J. ORCID:, Owens, M. J. ORCID: and Wilkinson, J. (2017) Tracking CMEs using data from the Solar Stormwatch project; observing deflections and other properties. Space Weather, 15 (9). pp. 1125-1140. ISSN 1542-7390

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1002/2017sw001640


With increasing technological dependence, society is becoming ever more affected by changes in the near-Earth space environment caused by space weather. The primary driver of these hazards are coronal mass ejections (CMEs). Solar Stormwatch is a citizen science project in which volunteers participated in several activities which characterised CMEs in the remote sensing images from the SECCHI instrument package on the twin STEREO spacecraft. Here, we analyse the results of the 'Track-it-back' activity, in which CMEs were tracked back through the COR2, COR1 and EUVI images. Analysis of the COR1, COR2 and EUVI data together allows CMEs to be studied consistently throughout the whole field-of-view spanned by these instruments (out to 15 solar radii). 4783 volunteers took part in this activity, creating a dataset containing 23,801 estimates of CME timing, location and size. We used this data to produce a catalogue of 41 CMEs, which is the first to consistently track CMEs through each of these instruments. We assess how the CME speeds, propagation directions and widths vary as the CMEs propagate through the fields of view of the different imagers. In particular, we compare the observed CME deflections between the COR1 and COR2 fields of view to the separation between the CME source region and the heliospheric current sheet (HCS), demonstrating that, in general, these CMEs appear to deflect towards the HCS, consistent with other modelling studies of CME propagation.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:71932
Uncontrolled Keywords:Atmospheric Science
Publisher:American Geophysical Union


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