Improving CME Forecasts Using the Hydro-Solution
Friday, 19 December 2014
Since October 2011, the Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) has used Enlil, a well-documented magnetohydrodynamic model of the heliosphere, to make numerical space weather forecasts of the arrival of coronal mass ejections (CMEs) at Earth. An accurate space weather forecast of CME arrival time at Earth depends upon an accurate characterization of all inputs to Enlil, including the background solar wind and the CME speed, width, and direction of propagation. Using the SWPC operational event repository, we compared the forecast for CME arrival time with ground-truth Wind observations and found multiple examples in which the CME forecast failed principally because of incorrect specification of the upstream solar wind speed. We suggest a simple process that can be used in near-real-time to improve CME forecasts.