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Observational and calibration techniques upgrade for the Solar Submillimeter Telescope (SST)

Grant number: 12/11619-9
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2012
Effective date (End): July 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Astronomy
Principal Investigator:Carlos Guillermo Giménez de Castro
Grantee:Jorge Fernando Valle Silva
Home Institution: Escola de Engenharia (EE). Universidade Presbiteriana Mackenzie (UPM). Instituto Presbiteriano Mackenzie. São Paulo, SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:06/06847-1 - Solar activity emissions from submillimeter waves to infrared (SIRA), AP.TEM

Abstract

The study of the spectral component of solar explosive emission in the sub-Terahertz range (>100 GHz) of solar flares opens new perspectives in the description of the dynamics of lower solar atmosphere and in the processes of particle acceleration in high-energy solar plasma. Since the year 1999, solar events are observed in two high frequencies, 212 and 405 GHz, with the Sub-millimeter wave Solar Telescope (SST) located in the Complejo Astronómico El Leoncito (CASLEO) in San Juan, Argentina. In this context, this project aims (i) the characterization of the radio spectrum in the large frequency range: 1-400 GHz to determine which mechanisms are responsible for the sub-Terahertz emission spectra. To achieve this primary objective, it is necessary (ii) a revision of the standard calibration procedures made with the SST and the improvement of the calculation of atmospheric opacity at 212 and 405 GHz, which has consequences in the estimation of emission fluxes. It is also necessary (iii) the improvement of observation techniques, specially the multi-beam pointing technique of the SST, to model the variations introduced in the records due to relative rotation of the solar disk in relation to the telescope beam. Finally, with the implementation of new processes of data reduction it will be possible (iv) a review of old records of solar emission during the occurrence of minor explosive events where the weak sub-Terahertz emission could have been obscured by variations of not solar origin and could reveal the nature of the processes of acceleration of high energy particles that are hard to observe in the visible and H± bands.