In-flight observation of long duration gamma-ray glows by aircraft

P. Kochkin, A.P.J. van Deursen, A. de Boer, M. Bardet, C. Allasia, J.F. Boissin, N. Østgaard

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

Long Gamma-Ray Glow is a long-lasting (several seconds to minutes) X- and gamma radiation presumably originated from high-electric field of thunderclouds. Such glows were previously observed by aircraft, balloons, and from the ground. When detected with other particles, i.e. electrons and neutrons, they are usually called Thunderstorm Ground Enhancements (TGEs). Their measured spectra are often consistent with Relativistic Runaway Electron Avalanche (RREA) mechanism. That is why RREA is a commonly accepted explanation for their existence. The gamma-ray glows are observed to be interrupted by lightning discharge, which terminates the high-electric field region.
In January 2016 an Airbus A340 factory test aircraft was performing intentional flights through thunderstorms over Northern Australia. The aircraft was equipped with a dedicated in-flight lightning detection system called ILDAS (www.ildas.nlr.nl). The system also contained two scintillation detectors each with 38x38 mm cylinder LaBr3 crystals. While being at 12 km altitude the system detected a 30-fold gamma-ray flux enhancement. It lasted for 20 seconds and was abruptly terminated by a lightning flash. The flash hit the aircraft and its parameters were recorded with 10 ns sampling time including gamma radiation. Ground-based lightning detection network WWLLN detected 4 strikes in the nearby region, all in association with the same flash. The ILDAS system recorded the time-resolved spectrum of the glow. In 6 minutes, after making a U-turn, the aircraft passed by the same glow. Smaller gamma-ray enhancement was again detected.
In this presentation we will show the mapped event timeline including airplane, gamma-ray glow, WWLLN, and cloud data. We will discuss the glow’s properties, i.e. intensity and differential spectrum, and its possible origin. This result will also be compared to previously reported observations.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria
PublisherEuropean Geosciences Union
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventEGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria - Vienna, Austria
Duration: 23 Apr 201728 Apr 2017
http://www.egu2017.eu/

Conference

ConferenceEGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria
CountryAustria
CityVienna
Period23/04/1728/04/17
Internet address

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aircraft
flight
gamma rays
lightning
luminescence
electron avalanche
flash
thunderstorms
augmentation
European Airbus
electric fields
balloons
industrial plants
scintillation
sampling
neutrons
detectors
crystals
electrons

Cite this

Kochkin, P., van Deursen, A. P. J., de Boer, A., Bardet, M., Allasia, C., Boissin, J. F., & Østgaard, N. (2017). In-flight observation of long duration gamma-ray glows by aircraft. In EGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria European Geosciences Union.
Kochkin, P. ; van Deursen, A.P.J. ; de Boer, A. ; Bardet, M. ; Allasia, C. ; Boissin, J.F. ; Østgaard, N. / In-flight observation of long duration gamma-ray glows by aircraft. EGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria. European Geosciences Union, 2017.
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title = "In-flight observation of long duration gamma-ray glows by aircraft",
abstract = "Long Gamma-Ray Glow is a long-lasting (several seconds to minutes) X- and gamma radiation presumably originated from high-electric field of thunderclouds. Such glows were previously observed by aircraft, balloons, and from the ground. When detected with other particles, i.e. electrons and neutrons, they are usually called Thunderstorm Ground Enhancements (TGEs). Their measured spectra are often consistent with Relativistic Runaway Electron Avalanche (RREA) mechanism. That is why RREA is a commonly accepted explanation for their existence. The gamma-ray glows are observed to be interrupted by lightning discharge, which terminates the high-electric field region.In January 2016 an Airbus A340 factory test aircraft was performing intentional flights through thunderstorms over Northern Australia. The aircraft was equipped with a dedicated in-flight lightning detection system called ILDAS (www.ildas.nlr.nl). The system also contained two scintillation detectors each with 38x38 mm cylinder LaBr3 crystals. While being at 12 km altitude the system detected a 30-fold gamma-ray flux enhancement. It lasted for 20 seconds and was abruptly terminated by a lightning flash. The flash hit the aircraft and its parameters were recorded with 10 ns sampling time including gamma radiation. Ground-based lightning detection network WWLLN detected 4 strikes in the nearby region, all in association with the same flash. The ILDAS system recorded the time-resolved spectrum of the glow. In 6 minutes, after making a U-turn, the aircraft passed by the same glow. Smaller gamma-ray enhancement was again detected. In this presentation we will show the mapped event timeline including airplane, gamma-ray glow, WWLLN, and cloud data. We will discuss the glow’s properties, i.e. intensity and differential spectrum, and its possible origin. This result will also be compared to previously reported observations.",
author = "P. Kochkin and {van Deursen}, A.P.J. and {de Boer}, A. and M. Bardet and C. Allasia and J.F. Boissin and N. {\O}stgaard",
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Kochkin, P, van Deursen, APJ, de Boer, A, Bardet, M, Allasia, C, Boissin, JF & Østgaard, N 2017, In-flight observation of long duration gamma-ray glows by aircraft. in EGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria. European Geosciences Union, EGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria, Vienna, Austria, 23/04/17.

In-flight observation of long duration gamma-ray glows by aircraft. / Kochkin, P.; van Deursen, A.P.J.; de Boer, A.; Bardet, M.; Allasia, C.; Boissin, J.F.; Østgaard, N.

EGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria. European Geosciences Union, 2017.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

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N2 - Long Gamma-Ray Glow is a long-lasting (several seconds to minutes) X- and gamma radiation presumably originated from high-electric field of thunderclouds. Such glows were previously observed by aircraft, balloons, and from the ground. When detected with other particles, i.e. electrons and neutrons, they are usually called Thunderstorm Ground Enhancements (TGEs). Their measured spectra are often consistent with Relativistic Runaway Electron Avalanche (RREA) mechanism. That is why RREA is a commonly accepted explanation for their existence. The gamma-ray glows are observed to be interrupted by lightning discharge, which terminates the high-electric field region.In January 2016 an Airbus A340 factory test aircraft was performing intentional flights through thunderstorms over Northern Australia. The aircraft was equipped with a dedicated in-flight lightning detection system called ILDAS (www.ildas.nlr.nl). The system also contained two scintillation detectors each with 38x38 mm cylinder LaBr3 crystals. While being at 12 km altitude the system detected a 30-fold gamma-ray flux enhancement. It lasted for 20 seconds and was abruptly terminated by a lightning flash. The flash hit the aircraft and its parameters were recorded with 10 ns sampling time including gamma radiation. Ground-based lightning detection network WWLLN detected 4 strikes in the nearby region, all in association with the same flash. The ILDAS system recorded the time-resolved spectrum of the glow. In 6 minutes, after making a U-turn, the aircraft passed by the same glow. Smaller gamma-ray enhancement was again detected. In this presentation we will show the mapped event timeline including airplane, gamma-ray glow, WWLLN, and cloud data. We will discuss the glow’s properties, i.e. intensity and differential spectrum, and its possible origin. This result will also be compared to previously reported observations.

AB - Long Gamma-Ray Glow is a long-lasting (several seconds to minutes) X- and gamma radiation presumably originated from high-electric field of thunderclouds. Such glows were previously observed by aircraft, balloons, and from the ground. When detected with other particles, i.e. electrons and neutrons, they are usually called Thunderstorm Ground Enhancements (TGEs). Their measured spectra are often consistent with Relativistic Runaway Electron Avalanche (RREA) mechanism. That is why RREA is a commonly accepted explanation for their existence. The gamma-ray glows are observed to be interrupted by lightning discharge, which terminates the high-electric field region.In January 2016 an Airbus A340 factory test aircraft was performing intentional flights through thunderstorms over Northern Australia. The aircraft was equipped with a dedicated in-flight lightning detection system called ILDAS (www.ildas.nlr.nl). The system also contained two scintillation detectors each with 38x38 mm cylinder LaBr3 crystals. While being at 12 km altitude the system detected a 30-fold gamma-ray flux enhancement. It lasted for 20 seconds and was abruptly terminated by a lightning flash. The flash hit the aircraft and its parameters were recorded with 10 ns sampling time including gamma radiation. Ground-based lightning detection network WWLLN detected 4 strikes in the nearby region, all in association with the same flash. The ILDAS system recorded the time-resolved spectrum of the glow. In 6 minutes, after making a U-turn, the aircraft passed by the same glow. Smaller gamma-ray enhancement was again detected. In this presentation we will show the mapped event timeline including airplane, gamma-ray glow, WWLLN, and cloud data. We will discuss the glow’s properties, i.e. intensity and differential spectrum, and its possible origin. This result will also be compared to previously reported observations.

M3 - Conference contribution

BT - EGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria

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ER -

Kochkin P, van Deursen APJ, de Boer A, Bardet M, Allasia C, Boissin JF et al. In-flight observation of long duration gamma-ray glows by aircraft. In EGU General Assembly 2017, 23-28 April 2017, Vienna, Austria. European Geosciences Union. 2017