On Our Ability to Predict Major Solar Flares

Conference paper
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Proceedings book series (ASSSP, volume 30)

Abstract

We discuss the outstanding problem of solar flare prediction and briefly overview the various methods that have been developed to address it. A class of these methods, relying on the fractal and multifractal nature of solar magnetic fields, are shown to be inadequate for flare prediction. More promise seems delivered by morphological methods applying mostly to the photospheric magnetic configuration of solar active regions but a definitive assessment of their veracity is subject to a number of caveats. Statistical and artificial-intelligence methods are also briefly discussed, together with their possible shortcomings. The central importance of proper validation procedures for any viable method is also highlighted, together with the need for future studies that will finally judge whether practically meaningful flare prediction will ever become possible, if only purely probabilistic.

Keywords

Coronal Mass Ejection Solar Flare Solar Energetic Particle Skill Score Multiscaling Method 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgements

I acknowledge valuable discussions and collaboration with M. Bobra, S. Bloomfield, and P. Gallagher. I also sincerely thank the Conveners of Symposium S3 of JENAM-2011, V. Obridko, K. Georgieva, and Y. Nagovitsyn for the invitation and opportunity to discuss the topic of this article. This work has received support from the European Unions Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n o PIRG07-GA-2010-268245.

References

  1. 1.
    Rust, D. M., Haggerty, D. K., Georgoulis, M. K., Sheeley, N. R., Wang, Y.-M., De Rosa, M. L., and Schrijver, C. J., The Astrophys. J., 687, 635, 2008Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Cane, H. V., Richardson, I. G., and von Rosenvinge, T. T., J. Geophys. Res., 115(A8), CiteID A08101, 2010Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Tziotziou, K., Sandberg, I., Anastasiadis, A., Daglis, I. A., and Nieminen, P., Astron. Astrophys., 514, 21, 2010Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Stassinopoulos, E. G. and Raymond, J. P., IEEE Proc., 76, 1423, 1988Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Parker, E. N., Space Weather, 3(8), CiteID S08004, 2005Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Christe, S., Hannah, I. G., Krucker, S., McTiernan, J., and Lin, R. P., The Astrophys. J., 677, 1385, 2008Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Hannah, I. G., Hudson, H. S., Battaglia, M., Christe, S., Kašparova, J., Krucker, S., Kundu, M. R., and Veronig, A., Space Sci. Rev., 159, 263, 2011Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Abramenko, V. I., Yurchyshyn, V. B., Wang, H., Spirock, T. J., Goode, P. R., Astrophys. J., 577, 487, 2002Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Abramenko, V. I., Yurchyshyn, V. B., Wang, H., Spirock, T. J., Goode, P. R., Astrophys. J., 597, 1135, 2003Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Abramenko, V. I., Astron. Rep., 47, 151, 2003Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Abramenko, V. I., The Astrophys. J., 629, 1141, 2005Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Abramenko, V. I., Solar Phys., 228, 29, 2005Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    McAteer, R. T. J., Gallagher, P. T., and Ireland, J., The Astrophys. J., 631, 628, 2005Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Georgoulis, M. K., Solar Phys., 228, 5, 2005Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Conlon, P. A., Gallagher, P. T., McAteer, R. T. J., Ireland, J., Young, C. A., Kestener, P. Hewett. R. J., and Maguire, K., Solar Phys., 248, 297, 2008Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Hewett. R. J., Gallagher, P. T., McAteer, R. T. J., Young, C. A., Ireland, J., Conlon, P. A., and Maguire, K., Solar Phys., 248, 311, 2008Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Ireland, J., Young, C. A., McAteer, R. T. J., Whelan, C., Hewett. R. J., and Gallagher, P. T., Solar Phys., 252, 121, 2008Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Abramenko, V. and Yurchyshyn, V., Astrophys J., 722, 122, 2010Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Kestener, P., Conlon, P. A., Khalil, A., Fennell, L., McAteer, R. T. J., Gallagher, P. T.m and Arneodo, A., Astrophys. J., 717, 995, 2010Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Falconer, D. A., J. Geophys. Res., 106(A11), 25185, 2001Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Falconer, D. A., Moore, R. L., and Gary, G. A., Astrophys. J., 569, 1016, 2002Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Falconer, D. A., Moore, R. L., and Gary, G. A., J. Geophys. Res., 108(A10), CiteID 1380, 2003Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Leka, K. D. and Barnes, G., Astrophys. J., 595, 1277, 2003Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Leka, K. D. and Barnes, G., Astrophys. J., 595, 1296, 2003Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Falconer, D. A., Moore, R. L., and Gary, G. A., Astrophys. J., 644, 1258, 2006Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Jing, J., Song, H., Abramenko, V., Tan, C., and Wang, H., Astrophys. J., 644, 1273, 2006Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Leka, K. D. and Barnes, G., The Astrophys. J., 656, 1173, 2007Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Georgoulis, M. K. and Rust, D. M., The Astrophys. J., 661, L109, 2007Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Schrijver, C. J., The Astrophys. J., 655, L117, 2007Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Falconer, D. A., Moore, R. L., and Gary, G. A., J. Atm. Solar Terr. Phys., 69, 86, 2007Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Barnes, G. and Leka, K. D., The Astrophys. J., 688, L107, 2008Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Falconer, D. A., Moore, R. L., and Gary, G. A., and Adams, M., Astrophys. J., 700, 166, 2009Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    Mason, J. P. and Hoeksema, J. T., The Astrophys. J., 723, 634, 2010Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    Canfield, R. C., Hudson, H. S., and McKenzie, D. E., Geophys. Res. Lett., 26, 627, 1999Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    Baker, D., van Driel-Gesztelyi, L., and Green, L. M., Solar Phys., 2011, in pressGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Bélanger, E., Vincent, A., and Charbonneau, P., Solar Phys., 245, 141, 2007Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    Barnes, G., Leka, K. D., Schumer, E. A., and Della-Rose, D. J., Space Weather, 5(9), CiteID S09002, 2007Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Wheatland, M. S., Astrophys. J., 679, 1621, 2008Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    Song, H., Tan, C., Jing, J., Wang, H., Yurchyshyn, V., and Abramenko, V., Solar Phys., 254, 101, 2009Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    Yu, D., Huang, X., Wang, H., and Cui, Y., Solar Phys., 255, 91, 2009Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    Yu, D., Huang, X., Hu, Q., Zhou, R., Wang, H., and Cui, Y., Astrophys. J., 709, 321, 2010Google Scholar
  42. 42.
    Yu, D., Huang, X., Wang, H., Cui, Y., Hu, Q., Zhou, R., Astrophys. J., 710, 869, 2010Google Scholar
  43. 43.
    Huang, X., Yu, D., Hu, Q., Wang, H., and Cui, Y., Solar Phys., 263, 175, 2010Google Scholar
  44. 44.
    Higgins, P. A., Gallagher, P. T., McAteer, R. T. J., and Bloomfield, D. S., Adv. Space. Res., 47, 2105, 2011Google Scholar
  45. 45.
    Wheatland, M. S., Astrophys. J., 609, 1134, 2004Google Scholar
  46. 46.
    Wheatland, M. S., Space Weather, 3(7), CiteID S07003, 2005Google Scholar
  47. 47.
    Reinard, A. A., Henthorn, J., Komm, R., and Hill, F., The Astrophys. J., 710, L121, 2010Google Scholar
  48. 48.
    Komm, R., Furguson, R., Hill, F., Barnes, G., and Leka, K. D., Solar Phys., 268, 389, 2011Google Scholar
  49. 49.
    Matthaeus, W. H. and Velli, M., Space Sci. Rev., 160, 145, 2011Google Scholar
  50. 50.
    McAteer, R. T. J., Gallagher, P. T., and Conlon, P. A., Adv. Space. Res., 45, 1067, 2010Google Scholar
  51. 51.
    Georgoulis, M. K., Solar Phys., 2011, in pressGoogle Scholar
  52. 52.
    Nicolis, G. and Prigogine, I.: Exploring Complexity: An Introduction, W. H. Freeman: New York, 1989Google Scholar
  53. 53.
    Aschwanden, M.: Self-Organized Criticality in Astrophysics, Springer-Praxis: Berlin, 2011Google Scholar
  54. 54.
    Scherrer, P. H. et al., Solar Phys., 162, 129, 1995Google Scholar
  55. 55.
    Nitta, N. and Hudson, H. S., Geophys. Res. Lett., 28, 3801, 2001Google Scholar
  56. 56.
    van Ballegooijen, A. A. and Martens, P. C. H., The Astrophys. J., 343, 971, 1989Google Scholar
  57. 57.
    Barnes, G., Longcope, D. W., and Leka, K. D., The Astrophys. J., 629, 561, 2005Google Scholar
  58. 58.
    Scherrer, P. H., and the SDO/HMI Team, Bull. Amer. Astron. Soc., 34, 735, 2002Google Scholar
  59. 59.
    Press, W. H., Teukolsky, S. A., Vetterling, W. T., and Flannery, B. P.: Numerical Recipes in FORTRAN: The Art of Scientific Computing, Cambridge University Press, 1992Google Scholar
  60. 60.
    Bobra, M., Georgoulis, M. K., and Hoeksema, R. T.: Calculating Flaring Potentials in Solar Active Regions Using SDO/HMI Vector Magnetic Field Data, Poster Presentation, LWS/SDO Workshop, Squaw Valley, CA, May 1–5, 2011Google Scholar
  61. 61.
    Wilks, D. S.: Statistical Methods in Atmospheric Sciences, Academic Press: San Diego, 1995Google Scholar
  62. 62.
    Longcope, D. W., Living Rev. Solar Phys., 2, 2005, 7Google Scholar
  63. 63.
    Wheatland, M. S., Astrophys. J., 536, L109, 2000Google Scholar
  64. 64.
    Wheatland, M. S., Solar Phys., 203, 87, 2001Google Scholar
  65. 65.
    Murphy, A. H. and Epstein, E. S., Monthly Weather Rev., 117, 572, 1989Google Scholar
  66. 66.
    Hartmann, H. C., Pagano, T. C., Sorooshiam, S., and Bales, R., Bull. Amer. Met. Soc., 84, 683, 2002Google Scholar
  67. 67.
    Bloomfield, D. S., 2011, private communicationGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Research Center for Astronomy and Applied Mathematics (RCAAM) of the Academy of AthensAthensGreece

Personalised recommendations