Solar flares, as well as their often eruptive companions called coronal mass ejections (CMEs), have been studied for decades. While most of these studies involve imaging the Sun, observations of the Sun as a star (full-disk irradiance) have also revealed interesting results through exploring the spectral variability during flare events. These Sun-as-a-star flare measurements have been made over the past two solar cycles with LASP-built instruments aboard the NASA UARS, TIMED, SORCE, SDO, and MinXSS satellites. Some of the new results from such studies include understanding the flare variability over all wavelengths from the energetic X-rays to the visible, discovering and classifying different flare phases, using coronal dimming measurements to predict CME properties of mass and velocity, and better understanding coronal heating processes.
Watch the public lecture: