A recent study suggests that if an enormous flare occurs on the Sun during the next solar cycle, it could cause damage to geosynchronous communications satellites to a total cost of 30 billion US dollars – this project investigates the likelihood of such a “megaflare”!
In 1859 a gigantic solar flare erupted on the Sun, disabling telegraph communications on the Earth. The "Carrington flare" is believed to have been the largest solar flare of the last 150 years - but how likely is another megaflare, and what are the consequences? Flare statistics can answer the first question. In this project the statistics of solar flares observed by the Reuven Ramaty High Energy Solar Spectrocopic Imager (RHESSI) satellite since its launch in 2002 will be examined. Bayesian statistical techniques will be brought to bear on the data, and comparison will be made with other satellite data, to try to assess the risk of another Carrington event... or worse!
Suitable for: Honours or Ph.D.
Techniques involved in the project: Programming, data analysis, numerical methods, Bayesian methods, statistics
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The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 912
Other opportunities with Associate Professor Mike Wheatland