J. Geophys. Res. 110 (A9), A09S14, 2005
© American Geophysical Union

Coronal mass ejection kinematics deduced from white light (Solar Mass Ejection Imager) and radio (Wind/WAVES) observations

M.J. Reiner
Catholic University of America and NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD

B.V. Jackson
Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences, Univ. California San Diego, CA

D.F. Webb and D.R. Mizuno
Inst. for Scientific Research, Boston College, MA

M.L. Kaiser
Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD

J.-L. Bougeret
Observatoire de Paris, Laboratoire d'Etudes Spatiales et d'Instrumentation en Astrophysique, Meudon, France


White-light and radio observations are combined to deduce the coronal and interplanetary kinematics of a fast coronal mass ejection (CME) that was ejected from the Sun at about 1700 UT on 2 November 2003. The CME, which was associated with an X8.3 solar flare from W56°, was observed by the Mauna Loa and Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) Large-Angle Spectrometric Coronograph (LASCO) coronagraphs to 14 Rsun. The measured plane-of-sky speed of the LASCO CME was 2600 km s-1. To deduce the kinematics of this CME, we use the plane-of-sky white light observations from both the Solar Mass Ejection Imager (SMEI) all-sky camera on board the Coriolis spacecraft and the SOHO/LASCO coronagraph, as well as the frequency drift rate of the low-frequency radio data and the results of the radio direction-finding analysis from the WAVES experiment on the Wind spacecraft. In agreement with the in situ observations for this event, we find that both the white light and radio observations indicate that the CME must have decelerated significantly beginning near the Sun and continuing well into the interplanetary medium. More specifically, by requiring self-consistency of all the available remote and in situ data, together with a simple, but not unreasonable, assumption about the general characteristic of the CME deceleration, we were able to deduce the radial speed and distance time profiles for this CME as it propagated from the Sun to 1 AU. The technique presented here, which is applicable to mutual SMEI/WAVES CME events, is expected to provide a more complete description and better quantitative understanding of how CMEs propagate through interplanetary space, as well as how the radio emissions, generated by propagating CME/shocks, relate to the shock and CME. This understanding can potentially lead to more accurate predictions for the onset times of space weather events, such as those that were observed during this unique period of intense solar activity.