Dunsink Lane, Dublin 15, D15 XR2R

DIAS Summer Interns 2023 #5

Continuing our work from Stream Birr, Seosamh and I (Chris) have been looking into possible ways to improve the data from our SuperSID receivers. Our first change will be to the frequencies that are being monitored by the receiver, as some of the stations that we previously observed have been powered off or are not being received clearly.

Using software to read the power of different frequencies being received by the sound card and checking that against online lists of active VLF stations, we can determine possible strong signals to monitor that should give accurate data.

I’ve continued developing the alternative method for graphing the incoming data, adding peak detection and some design elements to make it easier to read. It now overlays flare information taken from GOES X-ray data, as well as highlighting the prominent peaks and printing information about them (see example figure below). I intend to improve the peak detection and add more information such as flare duration, which will help when researching recent solar activity.

With regards to solar activity, on the night of July 17th, an M-class solar flare began which lasted 4 hours, continuing into the morning of the 18th. Unfortunately, as it was night for us when it occurred, we were unable to capture VLF data ourselves, but this was still an amazing event continuing the recent trend of high solar activity.

Additionally, due to our progress on the SuperSID, we have been researching another project. MagIE measures magnetic field strength along three axes, and has many small instruments in sites across the country. These magnetometers allow us to detect geomagnetic storms, aiding in the prediction and recording of solar events. More information can be obtained at their website