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Pamela's measurements of magnetospheric effects on high-energy solar particles
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2015 (English)In: Astrophysical Journal Letters, ISSN 2041-8205, Vol. 801, no 1, L3Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The nature of particle acceleration at the Sun, whether through flare reconnection processes or through shocks driven by coronal mass ejections, is still under scrutiny despite decades of research. The measured properties of solar energetic particles (SEPs) have long been modeled in different particle-acceleration scenarios. The challenge has been to disentangle the effects of transport from those of acceleration. The Payload for Antimatter Matter Exploration and Light-nuclei Astrophysics (PAMELA) instrument enables unique observations of SEPs including the composition and angular distribution of the particles about the magnetic field, i.e., pitch angle distribution, over a broad energy range (>80 MeV)-bridging a critical gap between space-based and ground-based measurements. We present high-energy SEP data from PAMELA acquired during the 2012 May 17 SEP event. These data exhibit differential anisotropies and thus transport features over the instrument rigidity range. SEP protons exhibit two distinct pitch angle distributions: a low-energy population that extends to 90 degrees and a population that is beamed at high energies (>1 GeV), consistent with neutron monitor measurements. To explain a low-energy SEP population that exhibits significant scattering or redistribution accompanied by a high-energy population that reaches the Earth relatively unaffected by dispersive transport effects, we postulate that the scattering or redistribution takes place locally. We believe that these are the first comprehensive measurements of the effects of solar energetic particle transport in the Earth's magnetosheath.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 801, no 1, L3
Keyword [en]
Earth, Sun: coronal mass ejections (CMEs), Sun: flares, Sun: heliosphere, Sun: particle emission
National Category
Astronomy, Astrophysics and Cosmology
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-163445DOI: 10.1088/2041-8205/801/1/L3ISI: 000350262900003ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84924143249OAI: diva2:801087
Swedish Research CouncilSwedish National Space Board

QC 20150408

Available from: 2015-04-08 Created: 2015-04-07 Last updated: 2015-04-08Bibliographically approved

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Carlson, PerPearce, Mark
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Particle and Astroparticle Physics
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