Observations of Solar Energetic Protons: A Comparison Between Model, Balloon, and In Situ Observations

Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Alexa Halford, Robyn M Millan, Mary K Hudson, Sarah L McGregor and Brian T Kress, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, United States
The Balloon Array for Radiation belt Relativistic Electron Losses (BARREL) was designed to observe X-rays from precipitating electrons in the Earth's atmosphere. During the second campaign in January 2014 Solar Energetic Proton (SEP) events were detected in the BARREL payloads as they produced atmospheric x-rays, γ-rays, and directly injected protons observed by the scintillator on the BARREL payloads. A total of 6 payloads were up during the event beginning 7 January with an X-class flare at 1832 UT, spread across a wide range of L and MLT. Payload 2I was on open field lines for the entire event while 2T (2W) crossed from open (closed) to closed (open) field lines over the course of the three day event. Payloads 2K and 2L were moving from the inner magnetosphere (L ~ 4) to higher field lines (L>6) while 2X stayed within the inner magnetosphere (L<6) for the entire event. Throughout this time, there were multiple conjunctions with the Van Allen Probes and good agreement with when (UT) and where (L-values) the energetic protons were observed, both in situ and at the balloons. In this poster we consider the transport of the protons from the sun and through the magnetosphere and eventual precipitation observed by the BARREL balloons.