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Research Topic: Solar-Terrestrial Relationships

The sun is a highly variable star, sporadically emitting huge amounts of energy, plasma and energetic particles. Solar terrestrial relationship (or Space Weather for short) is concerned with the influences of these emissions on Earth and the terrestrial (or in a broader scope planetary) environment. Some effects include aurora, disruptions in communication and power lines, atmospheric ionization, ozone depletion and reduction in GPS accuracy.

Research topics include:

  • The role of flares and shocks in the acceleration of solar energetic particles and their subsequent propagation through interplanetary space.
  • The spatial and temporal patterns of atmospheric ionization due to the precipitation of these particles into the atmosphere.
  • The geomagnetic consequences of solar activity and their role in particle precipitation.
  • The validation of our models using satellite and ground-based measurements.
  • Extreme events, risk assessments and risk governance.

The weather today

Space weather observations and forecast are available from NOAA (also available as executive summary or from Space Weather News. Space Weather Live has a strong focus on aurora, it is also available in german.

Methods include:

  • Monte Carlo simulations to model the primary interaction between particles and atmosphere.
  • Data-based models to determine spatial precipitation patterns.
  • Finite difference methodes to model particle propagation.
  • Stochastic simulations and cellular automata to model solar activity on long time scales.
  • Different methods to analyse large sets of satellite data for model verification and to integrate data sets of different sources.

Service to the Scientific Community (community model):

AIMOS data server: the Atmospheric Ionization Model OSnabrück provides 3D ionization rates for the atmosphere. Its spatial resolutaion can be adjusted to a large number of model atmospheres in GCMs as well as to atmospheric chemistry models. The model also allows for a user-defined grid.