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Proceedings Paper

Effect of enhanced x-ray flux on the ionosphere over Cyprus during solar flares
Author(s): Md. Golam Mostafa; Haris Haralambous
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Paper Abstract

In this work we study the effect of solar flares on the ionosphere over Cyprus. Solar flares are impulsive solar activity events usually coupled with Coronal Mass Ejection (CME). The arrival and the subsequent impact of solar flares on geospace, following an eruption on the Sun’s surface is almost immediate (around 9 min) whereas the impact of CMEs is rather delayed (2-3 days) as the former is based on X-ray radiation whereas the latter phenomenon is related with particles and magnetic fields travelling at lower speeds via the Solar Wind. The penetration of X-rays down to the Dregion following such an event enhances the electron density. This increase can be monitored by ionosondes, which measure the electron density up to the maximum electron density NmF2. The significance of this increase lies on the increase of signal absorption causing limited window of operating frequencies for HF communications. In this study the effect of enhanced X-ray flux on the ionosphere over Cyprus during solar flares has been investigated. To establish the correlation and extent of impact on different layers, data of X-ray intensity from Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) and ionospheric characteristics (D & F layer) over Nicosia station (35° N, 33° E) were examined for all solar flares during the period 2011-2014. The analysis revealed a positive and good correlation between frequency of minimum reflection, fmin and X-ray intensity for D layer demonstrating that X-rays play a dominant role in the ionization of lower ionosphere. Hence, X-ray flux can be used as a good proxy for studying the solar flare effects on lower ionosphere. The correlation coefficient between maximum electron density of F layer, NmF2 and X-ray intensity was found to be poor.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 June 2015
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 9535, Third International Conference on Remote Sensing and Geoinformation of the Environment (RSCy2015), 95350O (19 June 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2192785
Show Author Affiliations
Md. Golam Mostafa, Frederick Univ. (Cyprus)
Haris Haralambous, Frederick Univ. (Cyprus)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9535:
Third International Conference on Remote Sensing and Geoinformation of the Environment (RSCy2015)
Diofantos G. Hadjimitsis; Kyriacos Themistocleous; Silas Michaelides; Giorgos Papadavid, Editor(s)

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