Probing atmospheric electric fields in thunderstorms through radio emission from cosmic-ray-induced air showers

P. Schellart, T. N.G. Trinh, S. Buitink, A. Corstanje, J. E. Enriquez, H. Falcke, J. R. Hörandel, A. Nelles, J. P. Rachen, L. Rossetto, O. Scholten, S. Ter Veen, S. Thoudam, U. Ebert, C. Koehn, C. Rutjes, A. Alexov, J. M. Anderson, I. M. Avruch, M. J. BentumG. Bernardi, P. Best, A. Bonafede, F. Breitling, J. W. Broderick, M. Brüggen, H. R. Butcher, B. Ciardi, E. De Geus, M. De Vos, S. Duscha, J. Eislöffel, R. A. Fallows, W. Frieswijk, M. A. Garrett, J. Grießmeier, A. W. Gunst, G. Heald, J. W.T. Hessels, M. Hoeft, H. A. Holties, E. Juette, V. I. Kondratiev, M. Kuniyoshi, G. Kuper, G. Mann, R. McFadden, D. McKay-Bukowski, J. P. McKean, M. Mevius, J. Moldon, M. J. Norden, E. Orru, H. Paas, M. Pandey-Pommier, R. Pizzo, A. G. Polatidis, W. Reich, H. Röttgering, A. M.M. Scaife, D. J. Schwarz, M. Serylak, O. Smirnov, M. Steinmetz, J. Swinbank, M. Tagger, C. Tasse, M. C. Toribio, R. J. Van Weeren, R. Vermeulen, C. Vocks, M. W. Wise, O. Wucknitz, P. Zarka

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42 Scopus citations

Abstract

We present measurements of radio emission from cosmic ray air showers that took place during thunderstorms. The intensity and polarization patterns of these air showers are radically different from those measured during fair-weather conditions. With the use of a simple two-layer model for the atmospheric electric field, these patterns can be well reproduced by state-of-the-art simulation codes. This in turn provides a novel way to study atmospheric electric fields.

Original languageBritish English
Article number165001
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume114
Issue number16
DOIs
StatePublished - 24 Apr 2015

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