Monday 21 April 2014

Spectacular solar radio event

Last Friday, KAIRA observed the most amazing radio event from the sun. There was a strong X-ray event, which corresponded to an amazing multi-frequency solar event in the radio. The following plot is from the GOES X-ray monitor (source: NOAA/SWPC)

The event was detected at KAIRA and the following plot shows the entire event sequence.

KAIRA detecting of the solar radio event (Image: D. McKay-Bukowski)

The initial event was preceded by a smaller, fainter event. However the first of the strong radio bursts was very strong and mostly uniform in frequency distribution.

Zooming in on the initial event (Image: D. McKay-Bukowski)

 The subsequent events were much more complicated. In particular, there was a very slowly decaying radio event, which cascaded down through the different frequencies of the Low-Band Array (which was operating at the time).

The main event... very complex! (Image: D. McKay-Bukowski)

What is really curious is the ripple effect through the different frequencies. Is this an interferometric effect from the coupling between antennas? However, these data were taken with a single LBA aerial.

It will be interesting to see what auroral activity occurs over the next few days. Although it is getting close to the midnight-sun season, KAIRA will be able to monitor the events using the new riometry modes.

Overall it was a very interesting event. We will be conducting a number of dedicated solar observing events over the summer with KAIRA, so hope to report on more solar data in the next few months.

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