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Observation of solar radio burst events from Mars orbit with the Shallow Radar instrument

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posted on 2024-03-27, 13:27 authored by Christopher Gerekos, Gregor Steinbrügge, Immanuel C Jebaraj, Andreas Casillas, Elena Donini, Beatriz Sanchez-CanoBeatriz Sanchez-Cano, Mark Lester, Jasmina Magdalenić, Sean T Peters, Andrew Romero-Wolf, Donald D Blankenship
Context. Multispacecraft and multiwavelength observations of solar eruptions, such as flares and coronal mass ejections, are essential to understanding the complex processes behind these events. The study of solar burst events in the radio frequency spectrum has relied almost exclusively on data from ground-based observations and a few dedicated heliophysics missions such as STEREO or Wind. Aims. By reanalysing existing data from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) Shallow Radar (SHARAD) instrument, a Martian planetary radar sounder, we discovered the instrument was also capable of detecting solar radio bursts and that it was able to do so with unprecedented resolution for a space-based solar instrument. In this study, we aim to demonstrate the reliability and value of SHARAD as a new solar radio observatory. Methods. We characterised the sensitivity of the instrument to type III solar radio bursts through a statistical analysis of correlated observations using STEREO and Wind as references. Using 38 correlated detections, we established the conditions under which SHARAD can observe solar bursts in terms of acquisition geometry. As an example of scientific application, we also present the first analysis of type III characteristic times at high resolution beyond 1 AU. Results. A simple logistic model based purely on geometrical acquisition parameters can predict burst show versus no-show in SHARAD data with an accuracy of 79.2%, demonstrating the reliability of the instrument in detecting solar bursts and laying the foundation for using SHARAD as a solar radio observatory. The extremely high resolution of the instrument, both in temporal and frequency directions; its bandwidth; and its position in the Solar System enable SHARAD to make significant contributions to heliophysics. Notably, it could provide data on plasma processes on the site of the burst generation and along the propagation path of associated fast electron beams.

History

Author affiliation

College of Science & Engineering/Physics & Astronomy

Version

  • VoR (Version of Record)

Published in

Astronomy & Astrophysics

Volume

683

Pagination

A56 - A56

Publisher

EDP Sciences

issn

0004-6361

eissn

1432-0746

Copyright date

2024

Available date

2024-03-27

Language

en

Deposited by

Ms Lydia Wallman

Deposit date

2024-03-26

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