Advances in Research
UA ENGINEERING PROFESSOR DEVELOPING BETTER ANKLE PROSTHESIS
The human ankle supplies considerably more energy than both the hip and knee, making it a critical part of walking. Unfortunately, the standard below-knee prosthesis does not produce enough power to support an amputee’s walk. Instead, most prostheses only dissipate energy, or store and reuse energy in walking. This requires the amputee’s other joints to work harder, causing the amputee to expend more energy and resulting in an often unnatural and asymmetric gait. Dr. Xiangrong Shen, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at UA, hopes to develop a solution to this problem. He received a grant of about $564,000 from The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and launched a four-year project with researchers from UA, Vanderbilt University and the Georgia Institute of Technology to produce an alternative below-knee prosthesis capable of actively powering the ankle joint in use.
UA STUDY: THANKSGIVING DRIVING PATTERNS INCREASE RISK FOR FATAL CRASHES
Analyzing Alabama and national fatal crash data during Thanksgiving week, defined as the Monday before Thanksgiving through the Sunday after it, researchers at the UA Center for Advanced Public Safety (CAPS) found speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol, time of day and weather all contributed to more fatal crashes in Alabama and the United States. The study was based primarily on 2011 traffic data from Alabama, but it also compared these results against the most recent data from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System maintained by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The research was done through UA-developed data-analysis software called Critical Analysis Reporting Environment, or CARE, used by researchers at CAPS.
STUDY OF TRENDS IN PR REVEALS DIGITAL, GENDER, GENERATIONAL SHIFTS, ACCORDING TO UA PLANK CENTER
The largest and most global examination to date into the state of public relations profiles a profession being reshaped by forces as current as digital networks and as timeless as generational divides. The Cross Cultural Study of Leadership in Public Relations and Communication Management conducted by the Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations at UA reflects the views of nearly 4,500 global PR leaders across 23 nations. The study, which was co-sponsored by IBM and Heyman Associates, reveals significant generational, gender and cultural variations within the profession, which is now as much as 70 percent female, with women ascending in greater numbers to leadership positions. This study is the first of its kind to take an in-depth global look at cross-cultural leadership in Public Relations and Communication Management.
UA RECEIVED $1.6 MILLION GRANT FOR PHYSICS EDUCATION IMPROVEMENTS IN HIGH SCHOOLS
UA is a partner in a five-year, $8 million grant from the National Science Foundation to enhance physics teaching in Alabama’s high schools. The Alliance for Physics Excellence, or APEX, program aims to integrate the latest teaching practices into secondary physics programs via pre-service and in-service teacher education, ultimately having an impact on a quarter of the physics teachers in the state’s school systems and more than 40,000 students. Dr. Dennis Sunal, professor of science education, is the principal investigator, and Dr. J. W. Harrell, professor of physics, serves as co-principal investi-gator of the $1.6 million sub award to UA. Other project personnel include three faculty/staff members from the UA College of Education: Dr. John Dantzler, Dr. Cynthia Sunal, and Donna Turner.
UA LEADS INTERNATIONAL EFFORT TO DEVELOP ALTERNATIVE MATERIAL FOR GREEN-ENERGY
Dr. Takao Suzuki, director of UA’s Center for Materials for Information Technology, or MINT, is leading an approximate $1.6 million effort by a consortium that includes 13 other UA researchers along with scientists in Germany, Japan and elsewhere in the United States. They are seeking an alternative source material necessary to sustain the growing electric-energy movement. Just as supply, access and environmental issues surrounding oil led to searches for alternatives to traditional energy efforts, similar issues surrounding naturally-magnetic materials are causing concerns about sustaining electric energy. Under the new effort, the UA MINT researchers, along with other researchers in the consortium will seek to produce a permanent magnet that functions as well or better than rare-earth magnets but uses a more abundant manganese-based alloy.
UA HELD 13TH ANNUAL MCNAIR SCHOLARS RESEARCH CONFERENCE
The UA McNair Program held its 13th annual UA McNair Scholars Research Conference recently. The scholars represent five different colleges across the University, and their topics span the natural and social sciences as well as the humanities. McNair Scholars participating in the 2012 conference include: Hailah Saeed, Sydney Branch, Brass Bralley, Kristi Randle, Eugene Randle, Michael Hodnett, Keith Saint, Jade Watters, Joshua Moncrief, Paul Ramirez, Akeem Borom and Mark King. A TRIO program jointly funded by UA and the Department of Education, McNair helps prepare first-generation college students in financial need and those from groups historically underrepresented in graduate school to pursue graduate study.
UA PROFESSOR HONORED FOR DEDICATION TO ANTI-RACIST SCHOLARSHIP
Dr. Bobby Wilson, a professor in the department of geography at UA, has been named the recipient of the 2012 Presidential Achievement Award, given by the Association of American Geo-graphers, for his career-long dedication to anti-racist scholarship in geography. AAG is the predominant national scholarly organization in geography. Wilson is noted for his work in exploring issues of housing, urban revitalization, economic development, and social justice for black communities. Wilson has been a faculty member in The University of Alabama System for more than 35 years, working in the department of geography at the UAB before he joined the department of geography in UA’s College of Arts and Sciences in 2002. He served as interim chair of that department from 2009 to 2011.
UA ENGINEERING STUDENT WINS AWARD FOR RESEARCH PAPER
Larry Summerville, a UA senior in metallurgical and materials engineering from Columbus, MS, won first place for his research poster presentation at a regional meeting of the National Society of Black Engineers in Montgomery. He now has the oppor-tunity to compete nationally. NSBE was founded in 1975 with the intention “to increase the number of culturally responsible black engineers who excel academically, succeed professionally and positively impact the community.” The group hosts over 29,900 members and is among the largest student-governed organizations in the United States. Summerville conducted research for his poster, “Morphological evolution and surface migration of gold films,” in 2010 under the mentorship of Dr. Nitin Chopra, assistant professor in the department of metallurgical and materials engineering.
NEW UAB STUDY BETTER EXPLAINS RACIAL DISPARITIES IN STROKE
Researchers at the UAB School of Public Health say a 10-millimeter difference in blood pressure is associated with an 8 percent increase in stroke risk for white people, but a 24 percent increase in stroke risk for black people. Department of Biostatistics professor George Howard, Dr.P.H, said these new findings, recently published online in the Archives of Internal Medicine, mean primary care physicians should work closely with black patients and urge them to take blood pressure medicine, as well as follow up with them to ensure those medications are effective in bringing blood pressure under control.
UAB STUDY FINDS COGNITIVE TRAINING HELPS ADULTS WITH HIV
As antiretroviral therapy has evolved over 30 years and become more effective, HIV/AIDS has shifted from an acute condition to a chronic one. As patients live longer, research indicates that they are experiencing cognitive impairments at a higher rate than people without the disease. A new study by UAB researchers, published online October 15, 2012, in the Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care, shows that cognitive training exercises can help middle-age and older adults with HIV improve mental processing speed and their ability to complete daily tasks.
UAB STUDY REVEALS NOVEL TREATMENT OPTION FOR TRIPLE-NEGATIVE BREAST CANCER
UAB researchers have discovered that a new combination of two existing cancer drugs can kill triple-negative breast cancer cells. Triple-negative breast cancer is a highly aggressive subtype of breast cancer that does not express receptors for estrogen, progesterone or human epidermal growth factor. Because most cancer drugs target these receptors, triple-negative breast cancer is difficult to treat. The UAB findings were published on October 11, 2012, in the journal PLOS ONE.
UAB RESEARCH: MEDICAID EXPANSION COULD MEAN $1 BILLION GAIN FOR ALABAMA
If Alabama opts into the expansion of Medicaid under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), the federal government’s plan to increase the number of Americans covered by health insurance, the state could gain nearly $1 billion in new tax revenue, according to health care economists David Becker, Ph.D., and Michael Morrisey, Ph.D., at the UAB School of Public Health.
ASPIRIN COULD BECOME A TARGETED THERAPY FOR COLON CANCER
Aspirin has the potential to block tumor growth in certain patients with colorectal cancer, according to an editorial in the October 25, 2012, issue of the New England Journal of Medicine by a UAB oncologist. In a study that appears in the same issue, researchers examined the use of aspirin in the treatment outcomes of patients with colorectal cancer.
UAB FIRST IN NATION TO TEST EXPERIMENTAL THERAPY FOR EMPHYSEMA
UAB researchers recently injected a foam sealant into the lungs of a former smoker to treat his worsening emphysema. The patient was the first treated in the United States as part of a late-stage clinical trial of the AeriSeal System. The therapy, approved for use in parts of Europe and Israel, is under-going investigation in the United States as a potential method of reducing lung volume in patients with severe emphysema. Mark Dransfield, M.D., associate professor in the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine, is the primary investigator in the new study.
UAB STUDY SAYS CORNEAS EFFECTIVE AS GLAUCOMA SHUNT GRAFTS
Donor corneas that are not suitable for transplants may be a better option for patients needing tissue to cover a glaucoma shunt than the traditional tissue used in such operations, according to new research from UAB. The findings, published in the Journal of Glaucoma, suggest that cornea tissue is more durable and potentially safer than the more commonly used pericardium grafts.
UAB STUDY SHOWS RISK OF FATAL HEART DISEASE HIGHER AMONG BLACKS
Despite treatment advances for coronary heart disease over the past 20 years, black people still have twice the risk of fatal coronary heart disease compared with white people, according to a UAB study appearing in the November 7, 2012, issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. Researchers say most of this disparity may be due to a greater risk-factor burden among blacks – including smoking, diabetes and hypertension – suggesting that the disparity could be eliminated with better risk-factor control.
EXPERIMENTAL TOOL STRIVES FOR MORE ACCURATE PREDICTION OF SKIN CANCER RISK
Techniques used to breed better dairy cows could be adapted to improve prediction of skin cancer risk, according to a study published in the December, 2012 issue of the journal Genetics. The work, led by researchers from UAB and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, represents one of the first attempts to apply a statistical technique used to predict desirable traits in animals, such as greater milk production, to undesirable traits like disease risk in humans.
UAB RESEARCH: SURFING INTERNET, CROSSING STREET WILL LIKELY LEAD TO WIPEOUT
UAB research, published online in the journal Accident Analysis & Prevention, has found that college students crossing the street while surfing the internet on a smartphone are more than twice as likely to be hit or have a close call as when they crossed the street undistracted. The research, co-authored by Katherine Byington, Ph.D., and David Schwebel, Ph.D., associate dean in the UAB College of Arts and Sciences, revealed that students looked away from the street for an average of 36 seconds of every minute they waited to cross while distracted, but they looked away for less than one second with no distractions.
COLLEGE OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION AT UAHUNTSVILLE
Dr. Ravi Patnayakuni is one of the authors of the research paper “Logarithmic least squares method to priority for group decision making with incomplete fuzzy preference relations” that has been accepted for publication in the February, 2013 issue of Applied Mathematical Modeling. The paper was co-authored by Yejun Xu, Ravi Patnayakuni and Huimin Wang.
UAHUNTSVILLE COLLEGE OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION PROFESSOR EMERITUS PUBLISHES PAPER
On November 15, 2012, Professor Emeritus James McCollum had a paper, “Premises For The United States of Europe” entered into the Proceedings of the RAU Law Symposium, 5th Edition, Bucharest, Romania.
UAHUNTSVILLE PROFESSORS CLOSE DOD PROJECT
Dr. Mikel Petty, Associate Professor, and Wes Colley, Adjunct Assistant Professor, successfully closed out a project on “A Qualitative to Quantitative Methodology for Deter-mining the Need to Re-validate Models.” The program was supported by a DoD agency.
UAHUNTSVILLE COMPUTER SCIENTIST PUBLISHES RESEARCH PAPERS
- “Effective Color Combinations in Isosurface Visualization”, Timothy Newman and graduate student Sussan Einakian, will appear in the January, 2013 Visualization and Data Analysis Conference that explores the effectiveness (for human understanding) of certain color codings used in visualizations of medical and industrial data collections.
- “Exploring GPU- and Cluster-Based Improvements for Over-Sampled Volume Ray Casting Opacity Correction”, Timothy Newman and UAH alum Jong Kwan Lee, currently with Bowling Green State University, will appear in the International Journal of Image and Graphics. The work outlines a new method for achieving fast, high-fidelity visualizations of medical or scientific volume datasets using off-the-shelf commodity computing components.
UAHUNTSVILLE BIOLOGISTS PUBLISH RESEARCH PAPERS
- “The status of the stippled studfish, Fundulus bifax, a killifish endemic to the Tallapoosa River basin” Bruce Stallsmith, Endangered Species Research, in press.
- “A Sequence-based Genotyping Method to Distinguish Oplismenus hirtellus ss; undulatifolius from U.S. Native and Ornamental Species of Oplismenus”, Leland J. Cseke, Shiloh R. McCollum, Andrew B. Adrian, Derek Thacker, Joseph R. Herdy, Sharon M. Talley. JoVE (submitted)
- “A Sequence-based Genotyping Method to Distinguish Mikania micrantha from Other Members of the Mikania Species Complex”, Leland J. Cseke, Andrew B. Adrian, Derek Thacker, Sharon M. Talley, JoVE (submitted).
UAHUNTSVILLE PHYSICIST RECEIVES NANOSENSOR GRANT
Dr. Seyed Sadeghi, in collaboration with Dr. Mao in the department of Chemistry and Biochemistry of the University of Oklahoma, received 3-year funding from the US National Science Foundation to investigate and develop biological and chemical nanosensors using quantum coherence effects. The goal of this research, which is mostly based on the recent results of the research conducted by Dr. Sadeghi, is to use the rules of quantum mechanics to detect biological and chemical substances.
UAHUNTSVILLE PHYSICISTS PUBLISH RESEARCH PAPERS
- “Radial Dependence of Peak Proton and Iron Ion Fluxes in SEP Events: Application of the PATH Code”, O.P. Verkhoglyadova, G. Li, X. Ao, and G.P. Zank, The Astrophysical Journal, 2012, 757, 75.
- “The Transport of Density Fluctuations Throughout the Helio-sphere”, G. P. Zank, N. Jetha, Q. Hu, and P. Hunana, The Astrophysical Journal, 2012, 754, 1.
- “Interplanetary Propagation of Solar Energetic Particle Heavy Ions Observed at 1 AU: The Role of Energy Scaling”, G.M. Mason, G. Li, C.M.S. Cohen, M.I. Desai, D.K. Haggerty, R.A. Leske, R.A. Mewaldt, and G.P. Zank, Astrophysical Journal, 2012, 761, 104.
- “A Role of Magnetosonic Pulses on Variations of Voyager-1 MeV Electron Intensity in the Heliosheath”, H. Washimi, W. Webber, G. P. Zank, Q. Hu, V. Florinski, J. Adams, and Y. Kubo, The Astrophysical Journal Letters, 2012, 757:L2.
- “Trajectories and Distribution of Interstellar Dust Grains in the Heliosphere”, Jonathan D. Slavin, Priscilla C. Frisch, Hans-Reinhard Mueller, Jacob Heerikhuisen, Nikolai V. Pogorelov, William T. Reach, and G.P. Zank, The Astrophysical Journal, 2012, 760:46.
- Erratum: “Particle Acceleration at Quasi-Parallel Shock Waves: Theory and Observations at 1 AU”, L. Neergardt-Parker and G.P. Zank, The Astrophysical Journal, 2012, 757, 97.
- “Statistics for orbital neutron spectroscopy of the Moon and other airless planetary bodies.” Miller, R. S., J. Geophys. Res., 2012,117, E00H19.
- Reply to comment by I. Mitrofanov and W. Boynton on “Statistics for orbital neutron spectroscopy of the Moon and other airless planetary bodies.” Miller, R. S., J. Geophys. Res., 2012, 117, E10004.
- “Enhanced hydrogen at the lunar poles: New insights from the detection of epithermal and fast neutron signatures.” Miller, R. S., G. Nerurkar, and D. J. Lawrence (2012), J. Geophys. Res., 2012, 117, E11007.
- “A general treatment of the thermal noises in optical fibers.” Lingze Duan, Phys. Rev. A,2012, 86, 023817.
- “Atmospheric transfer of a radio-frequency clock signal with a diode laser.” Jinsong Nie, Lin Yang, and Lingze Duan, Appl. Opt., 2012, 51,8190-8194.
UAHUNTSVILLE CHEMISTS PUBLISH RESEARCH PAPERS
- “Docking of antischistosomal natural products with relevant protein targets.” Setzer, W.N. Advances in Chemistry Research, 2012, 16, 185-205.
- “Volatile components from the stem bark of Vitellaria paradoxa.” Owolabi, M.S.; Paudel, P.; Setzer, W.N.; Lajide, L. Journal of Essential Oil-Bearing Plants, 2012, 15(4), 531-533.
- “Microbiological activities of volatile constituents of Leucas aspera (Willd.) Link from Nepal.” Satyal, P.; Paudel, P.; Poudel, A.; Setzer, W.N. Journal of Natural Pharmaceuticals, 2012, 3, 118-119.
- “Biological activities and volatile constituents of Aegle marmelos (L.) Corrêa from Nepal.” Satyal, P.; Woods, K.E.; Dosoky, N.S.; Neupane, S.; Setzer, W.N. Journal of Medicinally Active Plants, 2012, 1(3), 114-122.
- “Chemical composition and anti-proliferative properties of Bursera graveolens essential oil.” Monzote, L.; Hill, G.M.; Cuellar, A.; Scull, R.; Setzer, W.N. Natural Product Communications, 2012, 7(11), 1531-1534.
- “Interaction of different extracts of Primula heterochroma Stapf. with red blood cell membrane lipids and proteins: Antioxidant and antihemolytic effects.” Nabavi, S.M.; Nabavi, S.F.; Setzer, W.N.; Alinezhad, H.; Zare, M.; Naqinezhad, A. Journal of Dietary Supplements, 2012, 9(4), 285-292.
- “A chemical ecological investigation of the allelopathic potential of Lamium amplexicaule and Lamium purpureum.” Jones, C.D.; Woods, K.E.; Setzer, W.N. Open Journal of Ecology, 2012, 2(4), 167-177.
- “Effect of silymarin on sodium fluoride-induced toxicity and oxidative stress in rat cardiac tissues.” Nabavi, S.M.; Nabavi, S.F.; Moghaddam, A.H.; Setzer, W.N.; Mirzaei, M. Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências, 2012, 84(4), 1121-1126.
- “Recombinant production, crystallization and X-ray crystallo-graphic structure determination of the peptidyl-tRNA hydrolase of P. aeruginosa.” Hughes, R.C.; McFeeters, H.; Coates, L.; McFeeters, R.L. Acta Crystallographica Section F, 2012, 68(12), 1472-1476.
UAHUNTSVILLE AWARDS FIRST DEGREES IN MODELING AND SIMULATION STUDENTS
The first two students earning Master of Science degrees in modeling and simulation at UAHuntsville were recently awarded academic degrees. Retonya Dunning and Frederick Segrest graduated during the fall commencement ceremony. The graduate program in modeling and simulation, housed in the university’s College of Science began in 2010 and is an innovative program preparing graduates for employment in private industry or government, con-ducting research in laboratories focused on modeling and simulation. Retonya Dunning of Sweetwater, AL, researched graduate schools until she discovered the university. “I chose UAHuntsville because of its modeling and simulation program. My interest in modeling and simulation began after I was introduced to the field through an internship at Wright Patterson Air Force Base. I would like to explore the various applications of modeling and simulation within the defense industry.” As a graduate assistant, Dunning has worked on a combat modeling project that involved recreating a historical battle utilizing VR-Forces software. “I also performed research which lead to the statistical analysis of Likert scale data analysis using gamma statistics. My academic experience and relationship with my professors at UAHuntsville have equipped me with the necessary knowledge and skill set, and networking opportunities which will lead to success in my career.” Dunning recently accepted an engineering position with Northrop Grumman. She earned an undergraduate degree in mathematics from Alabama A&M University. Rick Segrest of Huntsville was initially interested in the visualization aspect of modeling and simulation because of his background in graphic design and computer science. Professionally, he is also interested in database design and development, and artificial intelligence. “I currently work at Northrop Grumman performing user experience design and development tasks, and I hope to apply these interests and skills to my work.” In his database systems class, Segrest performed development work on a web portal with an Oracle database backend at a Boeing site. “I am now applying what I have learned in my software engineering course to writing requirements on my current project.” Segrest also has an undergraduate degree in graphic design from Auburn University, and holds a bachelor’s of science degree in computer science from UAHuntsville.
UAHUNTSVILLE PROVIDING SUPPORT TOWARD WORKSHOP ON NATIONAL NETWORK FOR MANUFACTURING INNOVATION
Huntsville will be the location for the first public workshop to help devise the design of a new National Network for Manufacturing Innovation. “Blueprint for Action: Workshop on the Design of the NNMI” will review the design developed from public input received through four public dialogue workshops as well as responses to a Request for Information. The event is organized by the federal interagency Advanced Manu-facturing National Program Office (AMNPO), in cooperation with stakeholders and local organizations. The Department of Defense will host the event, and additional support is being provided by NASA and The University of Alabama in Huntsville. As envisioned, the NNMI will be a network of regional hubs – each anchored by an IMI – that will connect technologically promising research discoveries and ideas for advanced, high-value-added products with existing U.S. manufacturers and aspiring start-up firms. Regional collaborations will bring together industry, universities, federal agencies and states to accelerate innovation by investing in industrially relevant manufacturing technologies with broad applications and to support education and training of an advanced manufacturing workforce.
HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS GET EXCITED ABOUT STEM AT UAHUNTSVILLE EVENT
Providing students an avenue to explore Science Technology Engineer-ing & Mathematics (STEM) fields by challenging them with a space project was what it was all about when 215 area high school juniors and seniors recently competed in six divisions at InSPIRESS, (Innovative System Project for the Increased Recruitment of Emerging STEM Students) held at Spragins Hall on the UAHuntsville campus. The competitions were sponsored by the NASA Discovery/New Frontiers Office and coordinated by Dr. Matt Turner and Dr. P.J. Benfield, principal researchers in Modeling & Simulation, and Dr. Phil Farrington, a professor on the Industrial Systems Engineering faculty. Student teams explore STEM fields by competing to design a spacecraft payload to travel to a planetary body. The high school student teams were challenged to design a 5-kilogram scientific payload to be included on a spacecraft designed by UAHuntsville students in the Integrated Product Teams Senior Design Class. The spacecraft for this competition would travel to Ganymede, a satellite of Jupiter and the largest moon in the solar system. Teams spent a semester planning their payload, and their progress was twice reviewed in that period. Winners in the past have traveled to Washington, DC, to present their project to Jim Green, director of the NASA Planetary Science Division.
ADVANCES IN RESEARCH FROM UAHUNTSVILLE’S VP FOR RESEARCH CENTER FOR APPLIED OPTICS (CAO)
- The Center for Applied Optics and UAH hosted a Town Hall Meeting on November 15, to inform the Regional Technical Community about the National Academy’s report “Optics and Photonics Essential Technologies for our Nation.” The National Academy’s report covers a wide range of Optics & Photonics disciplines of importance to Huntsville and all of Alabama, including Advanced Manu-facturing, Defense, Medicine, Communi-cation, STEM Education and Workforce Development. UAH-CAO Director Pat Reardon began the meeting by welcoming the attendees and guests, and then introduced President Altenkirch who gave the opening remarks. The meeting was then moderated by Dr. Phil Stahl, 2012 SPIE Vice President, and it featured an overview of the report by one of the co-authors, Dr. Paul McManamon. This was followed by an open, panel-led discussion. Panel members were Dr. Patrick J. Reardon, UAH-CAO, Dr. Chance Glenn, AAMU, Dr. Paul Ruffin, AMRDEC, Dr. Bob Berinato, Dynetics, Dr. Tommy Cantey, HEOS, and Mr. John Wachs, SMDC.
- Dr. Joseph Geary brought the Dragonfly sensor to Yuma, AZ, to acquire calibrated data during a week- long test of RPG launches. The Dragonfly sensor is a rugged new technology conceived by Dr. Geary for the rapid detection of hostile fire. The data acquired over the testing will be analyzed over the next few weeks, but preliminary results indicate detection and tracking of launch and impact.
- Dr. Robinson visited the Air Force Research Laboratory at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque, NM, in late November to set up a solar astronomy instrumentation laboratory that will be used for the testing of large Fabry-Perot tunable filters. Such filters are a mainstay in the field of solar astronomy. The AFRL lab was recently completed by Dr. K.S. Balasubramaniam to serve AFRL research astrophysicists as a testbed for such instruments. Dr. Robinson has also assembled a similar test lab at UAH for testing a specific large Fabry-Perot tunable filter, funded by the Air Force.
RESEARCH INSTITUTE (RI)
- Members of the Reliability and Failure Analysis Lab participated in the SRE (Society of Reliability Engineers) sponsored RAM 5 workshop. Dr Bill Wessels provided a tutorial on Affordable Reliability. Chris Sautter hosted an SAE meeting that was working on a new Condition Based Maintenance document sponsored by SAE. The high point of the workshop was the student paper competition. Seven student members of RFAL won prizes in the competition; three undergraduate presentations and three graduate presentations. The final award was for the best of show which was a graduate paper. The “best in show” garnered a $1000.00 scholarship check while the other winners all got checks for $500.00. A good day for UAH.
- Chris Sautter was a panel member during the DoD/SAE Maintenance Symposium in Grand Rapids, MI. The subject of the panel was “CBM+ Practioner’s Guide to Implementing a Successful Program”. The panel was organized by the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Maintenance. Chris is currently leading an effort by SAE to publish a “Recommended Practices Document” for CBM and this panel was designed to complement this effort.
CENTER FOR SPACE PLASMA & AERONOMIC RESEARCH (CSPAR)
Jacob Heerikhuisen attended the Fall AGU meeting in San Francisco, CA, where he met up with his summer interns that were at UAHuntsville in the summer of 2012 participating in the NSF-REU program. The NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates program in helio-physics run through CSPAR represents a unique undergraduate research partner-ship between UAHuntsville and NASA MSFC. The PI is Dr Jacob Heerikhuisen (Assistant Professor in Physics) and the Co-PI is Dr Amy Winebarger (Solar Physicist at MSFC). The first NSF-REU Heliophysics program was run during the summer of 2012, and involved 10 students from around the country working with NASA & UAHuntsville scientists (5 of each) for 10 weeks during the summer. One of the key aspects of the program is to get the students involved in “real” research. For this reason, the goal was set that each REU student should prepare a poster that would be presented in a scientific session at the annual American Geophysical Union conference in December. This year that goal was achieved, and all 10 posters were presented, with 5 of the 2012 REU students present in person. This resulted in unique exposure for each student, and confirms that UAHuntsville and its partners are involved in leading edge research with participation of under-graduate students.
IN THE NEWS
- Gary P. Zank is featured and quoted in an LA Times article about the Voyager 1 discovery of a new boundary between the solar wind and the local interstellar medium. “Gary Zank, a space physicist at the University of Alabama-Huntsville, said he wasn’t convinced Voyager 1 was still contained within the solar system and that it would take several months to figure out whether the probe had crossed the heliopause after all.
- Valerie Connaughton’s recent paper in JGR and her invited talk at the AGU resulted in a NASA press release and an associated animation. Connaughton’s team gathered GBM data for 601 TGFs from August 2008 to August 2011, with most of the events, 409 in all, discovered through the new techniques. The scientists then compared the gamma-ray data to radio emissions over the same period.
Her analysis results in a new interpretation for 95% of the radio signals detection in association with TGFs – they are due to the TGF itself, and not from associated lightning, as previously thought. Numerous articles have appeared word wide.
A new version of the GBM flight software was uploaded on November 26, 2012. This enables a new data mode in which GBM returns very high-resolu-tion data 24 hours a day instead of for a tenth of the day. There is also a new Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGF) detection method that increases the GBM TGF detection rate by a factorof ten. (The detection method was developed by me with assistance from Shaolin and is described in a paper submitted to JGR.) With this enhanced data and new detection method it is predicted that GBM will detect about 850 TGFs per year. Within about a
year GBM will have the largest TGFcatalog. This was an effort of the GBM team.
CSPAR has recently published the book: Space Weather: The Space Radiation Environment: Proceedings of the 11th International Astrophysics Conference (AIP Conference Proceedings / /Astronomy and Astrophysics), editors Qiang Hu, Gang Li, Gary P. Zank, Olga Verkhoglyadova, James H. Adams, (2012)
CSPAR has recently published the following papers: “Radial dependence of peak proton and iron ion fluxes in SEP events: application of the PATH code”, by O.P. Verkhoglyadova, G. Li, X. Ao, and G.P. Zank, The Astrophysical Journal, 757, 75, 2012.
- “The Transport of Density Fluctuations Throughout the Heliosphere,”, by G. P. Zank, N. Jetha, Q. Hu, and P. Hunana, The Astrophysical Journal, 754:1 (7pp), doi:10.1088/0004-637X/754/1/1, 2012
- “Interplanetary Propagation of Solar Energetic Particle Heavy Ions Observed at 1 AU: The Role Of Energy Scaling”, by G. M. Ma1, G. Li2, C. M. S. Cohen3, M. I. Desai4, D. K. Haggerty1, R. A. Leske3, R. A. Mewaldt3, and G. P. Zank, ApJ 761 104 doi:10.1088/0004-637X/761/2/104, 2012.
- “A Role of Magnetosonic Pulses on Variations of Voyager-1 MeV Electron Intensity in the Heliosheath”, by H. Washimi, W. Webber, G. P. Zank, Q. Hu, V. Florinski, J. Adams, and Y. Kubo, The Astrophysical Journal Letters, 757:L2, doi:10.1088/2041-8205/757/1/L2, 2012.
- “Trajectories and Distribution of Interstellar Dust Grains in the Heliosphere”, by Jonathan D. Slavin, Priscilla C. Frisch, Hans-Reinhard Mueller, Jacob Heerikhuisen, Nikolai V. Pogorelov, William T. Reach, and G.P. Zank, 760:46 (15pp), doi:10.1088/0004-637X/760/1/46, 2012.
- “Energy release in the solar corona from resolved magnetic braids” by J. W. Cirtain, L. Golub, A. R. Winebarger, B. De Pontieu, K. Kobayashi, R. L. Moore, R. W. Walsh, K. E. Korreck, M. Weber, P. McCauley, A. Title, S. Kuzin & C. E. DeForest, has been accepted for publication by Nature and will be featured on the cover. This paper reports on the initial results from the High Resolution Coronal Imager sounding rocket experiment which was flown successfully in July 2012, and for which Ken Kobayashi (CSPAR) acted as Project Scientist.
- Ken Kobayashi’s proposal to NASA SHP entitled, “The Chromospheric Lyman-Alpha Spectro Polarimeter” was funded in the amount of $323,747. Per Ken Kobasyashi, The UAHuntsville sounding rocket proposal “Chromospheric Lyman-alpha Spectro-Polarimeter: CLASP” has been selected by NASA for flight, and funded for $1,370,000 and 2.6 FTE in NASA (MSFC) civil servant labor over 3 years. UAHuntsville is the PI institution for this program, with Ken Kobayashi (CSPAR) as PI, and collaborates with MSFC, National Astronomical Observa-tory of Japan, Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias (Spain) and Institut d’Astro-physique Spatiale (France) to design, build and fly the experiment.
- Also, the MSFC proposal “The Marshall Grazing Incidence X-ray Spectrometer (MaGIXS)”, submitted to the NASA Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES) supporting research & technology (SR&T) opportunity, has been selected for funding. Ken Kobayashi (CSPAR) is a Co-I of the investigation, and responsible for optical design and test-ing of the experiment.
- Xiaocheng Guo’s proposal to NASA SHP entitled, “Cosmic Rays Modulation in the Outer Heliosheath” was funded in the amount of $349,316.
- Jim Adams’ proposal to STRO-ESI entitled, “Advanced Scintillating Fiber Technology for High Energy Neutron Spectrometers for Exploration” was funded in the amount of $499,967.
- Samaiyah Farid’s proposal to XRT entitled, “HINODE/XRT Remote Chief Observer Operations” was funded in the amount of $46,583.
- Veronique Pelassa’s proposal to NSF entitled, “Huntsville in Nashville: The Seventh Huntsville GRB Sympo-sium” was funded in the amount of $10,000.
- David Falconer’s, proposal to Wyle Lab entitled, “Implementing Multi-Variable Space Weather Forecasting and Interfacing with Current Mission Support Operations, was funded in the amount of $70,225.
CSPAR faculty, researchers and students attended the following meetings where they submitted oral presentations and posters:
- Gamma Ray Burst Symposium 2012, Marbella, Spain attended by James Michael Burgess (GRA) and researchers Narayana Bhat, Valerie Connaughton, and Ken Nishikawa.
- Valerie Connaughton
Title: “Fermi GBM capabilities for multi-messenger time-domain astronomy”
Owing to its wide sky coverage and broad energy range, the Fermi Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) is an excellent observer of the transient hard X-ray sky. GBM detects about 240-triggered Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRBs) per year, including over 30, which also trigger the Swift Burst Alert Telescope (BAT). The number of GRBs seen in common with Swift is smaller than expected from the overlap in sky coverage because GBM is not as sensitive as the BAT and the GBM GRB population is thus skewed to the brighter, closer bursts.
- Ken Nishikawa
K.-I. Nishikawa, B. Zhang, M. Medvedev, P. Hardee, E. J. Choi, K. W. Min, J. Niemiec, Y. Mizuno, A. Nordlund, J. T. Frederiksen, H. Sol, M. Pohl, D. H. Hartmann, & G. J. Fishman “Radiation from accelerated particles in relativistic jets with shocks, shear-flow, and reconnections”
“We investigated particle acceleration and shock structure associated with an unmagnetized relativistic jet propagating into an unmagnetized plasma. Strong magnetic fields generated in the trailing shock contribute to the electron’s transverse deflection and acceleration. We have calculated, self-consistently, the radia-tion from electrons accelerated in these turbulent magnetic fields.”
- IBEX Meeting, Santa Fe, NM
Attended by Jacob Heerikhuisen, Nickolai Pogorelov and Gary P. Zank.
- Jacob Heerikhuisen
Jacob Heerikhuisen, Eric Zirnstein, Akito, Kawamura, Nikolai Pogorelov, and Gary Zank, “Modeling the heliosphere with kinetic Hydrogen”
“During the talk I went through some of my latest modeling results, and also highlighted the student work by Eric Zirnstein and Akito Kawamura.”
- Nikolai Pogorelov
N. V. Pogorelov, S.N. Borovi-kov, L.F. Burlaga, R. Decker, R. Ebert, K. Gamayunov, J. Heerikhuisen, T. K. Kim, I.A. Kryukov, J.D. Richardson, E.C. Stone, S.T. Suess, G.P. Zank, M. Zhang, “Beyond the Heliopause? Inter-acting Flows at the Heliosheath Boundary”
“We discussed unusual regimes of the solar wind interaction with the local interstellar medium that may explain a sudden drop in the termination shock particle (TSP) flux intensity accompanied by an increase in the galactic cosmic ray (GCR) flux. The problems considered included solar cycle effects, instabilities of the heliopause, transition to chaotic behavior in the heliospheric current sheet region, etc.”
- Gary P. Zank
“Heliospheric Structure: The Bow Wave and the Hydrogen Wall”, IBEX 2012, Santa Fe, NM, November 2012
Fermi Symposium, Monterey, CA
Attended by Vandiver Chaplin, Valerie Connaughton, Ken Nishikawa, Veronique Pelassa, and Shaolin Xiong.
- Valerie Connaughton
Title: “Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes Fermi’s emerging role as an excellent storm catcher “
Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes give Fermi a view of high-energy turmoil in the Earth’s atmosphere, a view it shares with Very Low Frequency radio networks, yielding surprising results. Abstract: Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGFs) have become an unexpectedly rich area of scientific discovery for the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. The Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) observed a modest rate of one TGF per month over its first year of operation. Through a sequence of flight software enhancements and new observing modes, GBM now detects two TGFs on-board every week, with many more TGFs uncovered on the ground.
- Ken Nishikawa
K.-I. Nishikawa, B. Zhang, M. Medvedev, P. Hardee, E. J. Choi, K. W. Min, J. Niemiec, Y. Mizuno, A. Nordlund, J. T. Frederiksen, H. Sol, M. Pohl, D. H. Hartmann, I. Dutan, & G. J. Fishman, “Radiation from accelerated particles in relativistic jets with shocks, shear-flow and reconnections”
We found that the synthetic spectra depend on the bulk Lorentz factor of the jet, its temperature and strength of the generated magnetic fields. We also investigate synthetic spectra from accelerated electrons in strong magnetic fields generated by kinetic shear (Kelvin-Helmholtz) instabilities. The calculated properties of the emerging radiation aid our understanding of the complex time evolution and/or spectral structure in gamma-ray bursts, relativistic jets in general, and supernova remnants.
- Véronique Pelassa
V. Pelassa, V. Connaughton, M. Briggs , “On the origin of the high-energy emission from short Gamma-Ray Bursts observed by Fermi”
We present a study of the properties of short Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRB) as observed by the Gamma-Ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on-board the Fermi space telescope. The GBM observes about 45 short GRB per year, five of which have been detected above 100MeV by the Large Area Telescope (LAT) over the first three years of Fermi operations.
Poster 1: V. Pelassa, M. Briggs, V. Connaughton, “Short GRB from compact mergers, the complementarity of Fermi GBM and advanced LIGO/Virgo”
Short Gamma-Ray Bursts (sGRB) are thought to originate from accreting stellar-mass black holes resulting from compact mergers. The gravitational waves emitted during such close-by merger events will be observable after 2015 by the next generation detectors (Advanced LIGO/Virgo). The Gamma-Ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on-board the Fermi space telescope will complement these detectors, providing the gamma-ray counterparts to graviationnal waves detections.
Poster 2: V. Pelassa (UAH), F. Piron (CNRS/IN2P3/LUPM), N. Omodei (Stanford U.), E. Charles (SLAC), M. Burgess (UAH) “Performance of the Fermi-LAT Low-Energy Event Selection”
Whereas standard science analyses with the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) are restricted to well-reconstructed events, the LLE (LAT Low Energy) event selection is based on relaxed criteria, which offer a much higher effective area below 100 MeV. As this new event selection also increases the background levels, it can be used in case of impulsive celestial sources such as the prompt emission of Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRBs) which provide high signal-to-noise ratios.
- Shaolin Xiong
Shaolin Xiong, Michael S. Briggs, Valerie Connaughton, “All TTE, All The Time”
Time-Tagged Event (TTE) data, with 2-microsecond time resolution and 128 energy channels, is the most informative data for Gamma-Ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on-board the Fermi space telescope. Limited by the downlink bandwidth, the standard continuous data are binned in either 0.256 s or 4.096 s, and TTE data is enabled only for ~ 330 s when GBM is triggered. The onboard trigger time scale (>= 16 ms) makes GBM relatively insensitive to short transient sources with duration less than tens of ms, like Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGF) and weaker Short Gamma-Ray Bursts (sGRBs), and makes finding short-period pulsars in continuous data difficult.
- Space Science Meeting, Bern, Switzerland
Attended by Vladimir Florinski and Nickolai Pogorelov.
- Vladimir Florinski
“Cosmic ray transport in the inner and outer heliosheaths”, International Space Science Institute Workshop “Physics of the Heliopause”
The character of energetic particle transport in the distant heliosheath and especially in the vicinity of the heliopause could be quite distinct from the other regions of the heliosphere. The magnetic field structure is dominated by a tightly wrapped oscillating heliospheric current sheet, which is transported to higher latitudes by the nonradial heliosheath flows. Because of the solar cycle, the Voyagers are bound to eventually enter a region dominated by the sector field formed during the preceding solar maximum.
- Nikolai Pogorelov
Gave a talk on “Numerical Modeling of the Solar Wind flow in the Inner and Outer Heliosheath”
We discuss the solar cycle effects that result in the negative radial velocity component observed by Voyager 1. It is shown that our solar cycle model based on Ulysses observations correctly describes the timing of the termination shock crossings by Voyager 1 and 2. We discuss nonstandard flow regimes at the heliopause and a possible evolution of the bipolar field region in the solar wind, including the transition to chaotic behavior in the inner heliosheath.
- Arcetri 2012 Workshop, Florence, Italy
Attended by Gary P. Zank
The transport of density fluctuations throughout the heliosphere, Arcetri 2012 Workshop, Florence, Italy, November 2012 (Invited)
- 2012 Fall AGU Meeting, San Francisco, CA
Attended by 39 members of CSPAR consisting of seven faculty, eighteen researchers, nine students and five NSF-REU summer 2012 interns.
Vladimir Florinski, Jacob Heerikhuisen, Qiang Hu, Nikolai Pogorelov, Jakobus LeRoux, Gang Li and Gary P. Zank are the 7 CSPAR faculty that attended.
Jim Adams, Fathallah Alouani Bibi, Sergey Borovikov, Michael Briggs, Valerie Connaughton, David Falconer, Samaiyah Farid, Craig “Ghee” Fry, Xiaocheng Guo, Zheng Hua “Bill” Li, Xiacan Li, Hans Mueller, Lisa Upton, Olga Verkhoglydova, Haruichi Washimi, Kenneth Wright, S.T. Wu, and Shaolin Xiong are the18 CSPAR researchers that attended.
Lorin Arnold, Aaron Arthur, Brian Fayock, Akito Kawamura, Tae Kim, Udara Senanyake, Phyllis Whitlesley, Lulu Zhao and Eric Zirnstein are the 9 CSPAR students that attended.
David Fink, Katie Kosak, Gina Mazzuca, Alissa Oppenheimer and Abigail Taylor are the five NSF-REU 2012 students that attended meeting and did poster presentations. The other five NSF-REU 2012 students that submitted posters but not in attendance were Patrick Champey, Anthony DeStefano, Nathan Davis, Owen Gaulle and Dominic Robe.
- Lorin Arnold
Poster: L. Arnold and G. Li, “Dependence of Current-Sheet-like Structures on the Solar Wind Type from ACE Observation”
Solar wind is an ideal testbed for studying various properties of magnetohydrodynamics turbulence (MHD), including its intermittent characteristics. One type of intermittent structure in the solar wind are current-sheet-like structures or flux tubes. These flux tubes are identified by a sudden change in magnetic field deflection angle. These flux tube structures may originate from the solar surface or may emerge as a result of non-linear interactions in the solar wind.
- Udara Senanayake
Poster: U. Senanayake and V. Florikski, “Acceleration of Anomalous Cosmic Rays at a blunt Termination Shock”
Anomalous Cosmic Rays (ACRs) are thought to be produced at the termination shock by diffusive shock acceleration.When Voyager 1 crossed the termination shock in 2004, the measured spectra did not unfold into a single continuous power law and the source of the ACRs was not observed
- Eric Zirnstein
Poster: E. Zirnstein, J. Heerikhuisen, N. V. Pogorelov, G. P. Zank, “Numerical Simulations of Primary and Secondary Hydrogen ENA Fluxes at 1 AU”
The interaction between the solar wind (SW) and local interstellar medium (LISM) is dominated by charge exchange processes between cold Hydrogen (H) atoms and hot plasma protons, creating H energetic neutral atoms (ENAs). Primary H ENAs are born from initial charge exchanges between LISM H atoms and SW protons throughout the heliosphere. Secondary H ENAs, however, are created from a secondary charge exchange process, involving the creation of pick-up ions (PUIs). Re-neutralization of these PUIs outside the HP may provide an explanation for the existence of the IBEX ribbon.
- Vladimir Florinski
Poster: “Cosmic rays at the edge of the solar system”
I report on the properties of galactic cosmic-ray modulation in the interface separating the solar system material from the surrounding interstellar cloud. Specifically, I consider (a) the response of cosmic rays to the tilt of the heliospheric current sheet in the inner heliosheath via the Hill-Florinski effect, and (b) the effect of turbulent activity driven by MHD instabilities at the heliopause on cosmic-ray diffusion in the outer heliosheath.
- Qiang Hu
Posters: David J. Fink; Qiang Hu, “Reconstruction of Interplanetary Coronal Mass Ejections Using Multi-spacecraft Observations”
Qiang Hu; Jiong Qiu; David J. Fink; Jinlei Zheng, “On the Magnetic Field Topology and Magnetic Flux Budget of CME-ICME Intercomparison”
Both are dealing with Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) originating at the solar corona and sometimes propagating outward through Sun-Earth space in the form of magnetic flux ropes. Spacecraft observations from modern-day NASA missions, including ACE (Advanced Composition Explorer), STEREO, and SDO (Solar Dynamics Observatory) are utilized to examine these structures and their connections to solar sources.
- Jakobus Le Roux
Poster: “A Focused Transport Approach to SEP acceleration at a Fast Parallel Shock in the Corona Including Self-excitation of Alfvén Waves”
It has been argued that the acceleration of SEPS at a quasi-parallel CME-driven shock to GeV energies in the corona only occurs if strong wave-excitation by SEPs ahead of the shock reduces the parallel mean free path upstream, thus boosting the rate of diffusive shock acceleration. To investigate this issue, we modeled SEP acceleration at a fast parallel traveling shock in the corona with an existing time-dependent focused transport model.
- Gang Li
Gang Li, Xianzhi Ao, Olga Verkhoglyadova, C. D. Fry, Gary Zank, “Particle acceleration and transport at a 2D CME-driven shock using the HAFv3 and PATH Code”
We study particle acceleration at a 2D CME-driven shock and the subsequent transport in the inner heliosphere (up to 2 AU) by coupling the kinematic Hakamada-Akasofu-Fry version 3 (HAFv3) solar wind model (Hakamada and Akasofu, 1982, Fry et al. 2003) with the Particle Acceleration and Transport in the Heliosphere (PATH) model (Zank et al., 2000, Li et al., 2003, 2005, Verkhoglyadova et al. 2009). The HAFv3 provides the evolution of a two-dimensional shock geometry and other plasma parameters, which are fed into the PATH model to investigate the effect of a varying shock geometry on particle acceleration and transport.
- Nikolai Pogorelov
Organized a session “Physical Processes in the Vicinity of the Heliopause” at the Fall AGU Meeting, December 3 – 8, 2012.
Presented an oral talk at the Fall AGU Meeting, December 3 – 8, 2012: N.V. Pogorelov, S. N. Borovikov, R. W. Ebert, J. Heerikhuisen, T. K Kim, I. A. Kryukov, J. D Richardson, S. T. Suess, G. P. Zank, “Nonstationary Phenomena in the Heliosheath”
The inner heliosheath is the venue of wave interaction, MHD instabilities, and turbulence. We investigate these phenomena in the heliopause vicinity using a new, based on Ulysses observations, solar cycle model. It is shown that a number of puzzling observations may be attributed to time-dependent effects.
- Fathallah Alouani-Bibi
Posters: “Fathallah Alouani-Bibi, and Jakobus le Roux, “Diffusion of energetic particles in intermittent q-Gaussian turbulence”
The transport of high-energy charged particles in intermittent solar wind magnetic field turbulence is analyzed. The turbulence is assumed static, low frequency with intensity ranging from weak to strong. The statistical properties of the turbulence and intermittency are derived from observations at 1 AU using high-resolution ACE (Magnetometer) data. Two models for the turbulence are examined: slab and composite (two-dimensional plus slab) in the presence of a q-Gaussian type intermittency.
- Nathan Davis (NSF_REU Summer Intern), Fathallah Alouani-Bibi, and Jakobus le Roux, “Simulation of charged particle trajectories across an interplanetary shock”
The main objective of this study is to numerically simulate the interaction of solar wind particles with a traveling interplanetary shock, thus illuminating some of the basic physics of shock acceleration (Fermi acceleration) (Bell 1978, Blandford & Eichler 1987, Jones & Ellison 1991). Our simulations of particle interaction with a parallel shock have shown the following:
1. Efficient acceleration
2. The distribution function of downstream particles at late times is independent of the slope of the initial distribution
3. Shorter mean scattering times increase the shock acceleration rate of particles
4. A larger escape length (lower escape probability) downstream increases the maximum energy to which particles can be accelerated at the shock.
- Michael Briggs
Michael S. Briggs, Shaolin Xiong, Valerie Connaughton, J. Eric Grove, Alexandre Chekhtman, Robert H. Holzworth & Michael L. Hutchins “Lower TGF Detection Threshold for Fermi GBM: Sample Properties”
The original method for the Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on Fermi to detect transients, including TGFs, is in-orbit monitoring by the flight software of the detector rates for statistically significant increases. This method has a hardware limitation of a minimum integration time of 16 ms. Since most TGFs are shorter than 1 ms this integration time reduces the detection sensitivity for TGFs by adding in extra background. Since July 2010 we have been able to download individual photon data for selected portions of the orbit. Searching this enhanced data offline has greatly increased the GBM TGF detection rate, with a lowered threshold in intensity and in duration.
- Valerie Connaughton
Title: “Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flash Science from the Fermi Gamma-ray Burst Monitor”
Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGFs) have become an unexpectedly rich area of scientific discovery for the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, an astrophysical space mission launched in June 2008. The Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on-board Fermi observed a modest rate of one TGF per month over its first year of operation. Through a sequence of operational changes, GBM now detects two TGFs on-board every week, with additional, weaker TGFs uncovered on the ground.
- David A. Falconer
David A. Falconer (UAHunts-ville/MSFC), Ronald L. Moore (MSFC), Abdulnasser F. Barghouty (MSFC), and Igor Khazanov (UAHutsville), “Fore-casting the Solar Drivers of Severe Space Weather from Active-Region Magnetograms”
We have previously shown that an active region’s probability of producing major flares and CMEs is a function of a free-energy proxy. In this talk we 1) Show that when controlling for our free-energy proxy, previous flare activity has additional predictive ability indicating some other persistent factor or factors can be used to improve our forecast. 2) That our full disk forecasts agree reasonably with the actual event rate, and that for central disk our forecast is even better.
- Craig D. “Ghee” Fry
Poster: “The Role of Multi-point Observations in Predicting SEPs Using the Radiation, Interplanetary Shocks, & Coronal Sources (RISCS) System”
Multi-point observations play a critical role in calibrating our coupled RISCS system, validating the RISCS software and assessing its solar energetic particle (SEP) forecast performance.
The RISCS system is driven by a toolset of our existing physics based models and codes that forecast and “nowcast” the interplanetary energetic particle and radiation environment throughout the inner heliosphere.
- Hans Mueller
Poster: “Filtration of interstellar helium in the heliosphere”
The propagation of interstellar neutral helium atoms on the background of a global heliosphere model is calculated. Loss and production of neutral particles during their path through the heliosphere is determined, which yields the filtration factor connecting helium measurements in the inner heliosphere, for example by IBEX, to the helium characteristics in the pristine interstellar medium. The calculations use an analytic, conserving neutral trajectory method.
- Lisa Upton
Lisa Upton, UAHuntsville, David Hathaway, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, Katie Kosak, Florida Institute of Technology, “Meridional Flow in Solar Cycle 24: The Impact on the Polar Magnetic Fields”
Axisymmetric flows, Differential Rotation and Meridional Flow (MF), were measured by tracking the motion of magnetic elements on the surface of the Sun using data obtained by the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI) on the NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) Mission. HMI provides the highest resolution full-disk magnetograms available to date. This dramatically reduces the noise in axisymmetric flows, particularly at high latitudes (i.e. near the poles). The MF was found to vary greatly from one Carrington Rotation to the next.
- Haruichi Washimi
Poster: H. Washimi, G.P. Zank, Q. Hu, A. Nakamizo, T. Tanaka, M. Kojima and Y. Kubo“A three-dimensional MHD simulation analysis of the origin of the slow solar wind”
We have developed a 3D MHD simulation model for the study of the solar-wind acceleration mechanism and for reproducing a realistic configuration of solar wind plasma by using observed photospheric magnetic field at each Carrington rotation cycle. Using an unstructured mesh coordinate system on spherical surface with fine spacing in radial direction, we aim to reproduce a wide range of solar-wind plasma configuration from the photosphere to 1AU. Using this MHD simulation system, we will study the origin of the slow solar wind from nearby regions of some isolated active regions during CR1900-CR1913 in some details.
- Kenneth Wright
T. A. Schneider, J. A. Vaughn, and K. H. Wright, “The High Intensity Solar Environment Test Capability”
Across the world, new space-flight missions are being designed and executed that will place spacecraft and instruments into challenging environments throughout the solar system. To aid in the successful completion of these new missions, NASA has developed a new flexible space environment test platform. The High Intensity Solar Environment Test (HISET) capability located at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center provides scientists and engineers with the means to test spacecraft materials and systems in a wide range of solar wind and solar photon environments.
While at AGU, Dr. Wright and graduate student Phyllis Whittlesey participated in a Solar Probe Plus/ SWEAP Science Team meeting. During the meeting, Ms. Whittlesey gave a presentation concerning the status of the Solar Wind Facility that will be used to verify instrument design of the Faraday Cup that is part of the SWEAP experiment.
Dr. Wright, along with NASA/MSFC colleagues, visited Space Systems/Loral in Palo Alto, CA, to review results from a multi-year test campaign just recently concluded and to discuss schedule and requirements for a new test campaign that will begin in early CY2013.
- S. T. Wu
S. T. Wu, Murray Dryer, Chin-Chun Wu, Simon Plunkett, Kan Liou, and C. D. Fry
“Analysis of the Evolution and Interaction of Multiple Coronal Mass Ejections and Their Shocks”
After a long-lasting solar minimum (2007-2009), the Sun has been getting more active since 2010. Many coronal mass ejections have erupted and interacted with each other and with the non-uniform solar wind medium since August 2010. Many sizable CMEs erupted in July 2012 alone. Three consecutive CMEs were observed on July 17 (~13:54UT), July 18 (~06:24UT), and July 19 (~05:39UT) from different source regions located at S23W61, N18W180, and S17W92, with speeds of 802, 713, and 1160 km/s, respectively.
- M. Dryer, K. Liou, C.-C. Wu, S. T. Wu, N. Rich, S. Plunkett, L. Simpson, C. D. Fry, and K. Schenk. “Extreme Fast Coronal Mass Ejection”
On July 23, 2012, multiple spacecraft observed an extremely fast coronal mass ejection (CME) with propagation speed greater than 2000 km/s near the Sun. The event is first seen in the SOHO/LASCO C2 coronagraph at 02:36 UT as a bright loop over the west limb with leading edge at ~3 solar radii (Rs). The event develops with extensions to a full asymmetric halo CME by 03:12 UT, and the averaged speed through both C2/C3 fields is approximately 2142 km/s.
- Olga Verkhoglyadova
X. Ao (1), O. P. Verkhoglyadova (1,2), G. Li (3,1) and G. P. Zank (3,1) “Modeling radial dependencies in SEP events with the PATH”
We use Particle Acceleration and Transport in the Heliosphere (PATH) code for a detailed study of radial dependencies of different parameters in typical CME-related SEP events. We focus on radial evolution of diffusion coefficients in the shock vicinity (shock acceleration efficiency), particle time-intensity profiles, peak fluxes and elemental abundances in the range of heliocentric distances from 0.2 to 2 AU.
- Shaolin Xiong
Shaolin Xiong, Michael S. Briggs and Valerie Connaughton, “Estimating the TGF-lightning ratio and the global TGF rate from GBM data”
By downlinking individual photon data for lightning-active regions and searching in finer time scales, the Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGF) rate detected by Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on-board Fermi has been increased by a factor of $\sim 10$. The selective nature of the observations makes it difficult to predict the world-wide TGF rate directly. We compensate for the inhomogenous collection of the GBM data by normalizing to a more uniform lightning dataset.
- Voyager Science Steering Group Meeting in San Francisco, CA December 2, 2012
Attended by Nikolai Pogorelov and Gary P. Zank
The title of the talk given by Nikolai Pogorelov was “The Heliopause and Plasma Flow in Its Vicinity”
We show that our solar cycle model based on Ulysses observations correctly describes the timing of the termination shock crossings by Voyager 1 and 2. We discuss nonstandard flow regimes at the heliopause and a possible evolution of the bipolar field region in the solar wind, including the transition to chaotic behavior in the inner heliosheath.
- Gary P. Zank
“Heliospheric Structure: Over-view of two sets of MHD Global Simulations”, Voyager Science Steering Group Meeting, San Francisco, CA, December, 2012
AGU 2012 ORAL AND POSTER PRESENTATIONS FOR NON-ATTENDEES
- Gary Webb
Webb, G. M., McKenzie, J. F., Hu, Q., Dasgupta, B., and Zank, G.P. 2012, “Conservation Laws: (a) Alfven waves in the solar wind (b) MHD fluid Relabeling Symmetries”
We discuss the use of Noether’s first and second theorems in the derivation of conservation laws for fluid and plasma systems governed by an action principle. We apply Noether’s first and second theorems to derive conservation laws for equations describing the interaction (wave mixing) of backward and forward (radially inward and outward) propagating Alfven waves in stellar winds, due to large-scale gradients in the background flow. Noether’s first theorem is used to derive the wave action, or canonical wave energy conservation equation, which is associated with the linearity symmetry of the equations. More generally, this conservation law is a special case of the Green’s theorem conservation law for the wave mixing system and the adjoint wave mixing system.
- Ken Kobayashi
Amy Winebarger (NASA MSFC) presented the talk “The Fundamental Structure of Coronal Loops” by Amy R Winebarger, Harry P Warren, Jonathan w Cirtain, Ken Kobayashi, Kelly E Korreck, Leon Golub, Sergei Kuzin, Robert William Walsh, Craig DeForest, Bart De Pontieu, Alan M. Title, Mark Weber at the fall AGU meeting.
Fana Mulu-Moore presented the talk “Loop Evolution Observed with AIA and Hi-C” by Amy R. Winebarger; Jonathan w. Cirtain; Ken Kobayashi; Kelly E. Korreck; Leon Golub; Sergei Kuzin; Robert W. Walsh; Craig DeForest; Bart De Pontieu; Alan M. Title; Mark Weber, at the fall AGU meeting.
REFERED CONFERENCE PUBLICATIONS
- “Efficiency of particle acceleration at oblique strong CME shocks from 0.13 to 2.5 AU: PATH modeling”, by O.P. Verkhoglyadova, Gang Li, G.P. Zank, and X. Ao, in Proceedings of the 11th Annual International Astrophysics Conference, editors Qiang Hu, Gang Li, and G.P. Zank, (2012).
- “Alfvén Wave Interactions in the Solar Wind”, G. M. Webb, J. F. McKenzie, Q. Hu, J. A. le Roux, and G. P. Zank, in Proceedings of the 11th Annual International Astrophysics Conference, editors Qiang Hu, Gang Li, and G.P. Zank, (2012).
- “Shock Surfing at a Two-Fluid Plasma Model”, Ross Burrows, Xianzhi Ao, and G.P. Zank, in Proceedings of the 11th Annual International Astrophysics Conference, editors Qiang Hu, Gang Li, and G.P. Zank, (2012).
- “3D Simulation of LISM Oxygen Flux with PUIs inside of Heliosphere”, by Akito D. Kawamura, Jacob Heerikhuisen, Nikolai V. Pogorelov and Gary P. Zank, in Proceedings of the 11th Annual International Astrophysics Conference, editors Qiang Hu, Gang Li, and G.P. Zank, (2012).
- “Numerical Modeling of the Solar Wind Flow with Observational Boundary Conditions”, by N. V. Pogorelov, S. N. Borovikov, L. F. Burlaga, R. W. Ebert, J. Heerikhuisen, T. K. Kim, I. A. Kryukov, S. T. Suess, S. T. Wu, and G. P. Zank, in Proceedings of the 11th Annual International Astrophysics Conference, editors Qiang Hu, Gang Li, and G.P. Zank, (2012).
- “The Radiation, Interplanetary Shocks, and Coronal Sources (RISCS) Toolset”, by G.P. Zank, E.K. Newton, C. Fry, J. H. Adams, Jr, Gang Li, O.P. Verkhoglyadova, X. Ao, N. V. Pogorelov, and D. Falconer, in Proceedings of the 11th Annual International Astrophysics Conference, editors Qiang Hu, Gang Li, and G.P. Zank, (2012).