Comparison of the shock arrival times for Earth-directed ICMEs provided by the WSA-Enlil+Cone model and in-situ observations at L1: A Case Study

University essay from Uppsala universitet/Institutionen för fysik och astronomiUppsala universitet/Institutet för rymdfysik, Uppsalaavdelningen


A case study which examines the agreement between prediction and data is performed for three, complex interplanetary shocks which were detected at the Sun-Earth Lagrange point L1 and induced moderate to intense geomagnetic storms. We use model output from previous runs of the coupled coronal-heliosphere WSA-Enlil+Cone model, available through the Community Coordinated Modeling Center (CCMC), and in-situ data from the OMNI data set.

Code written in MATLAB is used to compare the model output with the in-situ measurements of the interplanetary magnetic field as well as the density, speed and temperature of the solar wind. In addition, the difference between the predicted and actual shock arrival time is computed and regions of potential temperature depression are identified. A considerable discrepancy is found between data and model for the studied events. The main reason is deemed to be an inadequate representation of the ambient solar wind as well as the complex interactions between interplanetary coronal mass ejections and corotating interaction regions. We suggest future steps to be taken for the further development of the model as well as for the general understanding of space weather and the Sun-Earth connection.

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