Geophysical Centre in Dourbes

Cosmic rays

Cosmic rays are interstellar voyagers like no others: a stream of microscopic particles - atomic nuclei - that travel across the universe almost at the speed of light. High-energy particles come from our galaxy, the Milky Way and even further away.
Their origin is still subject of an ongoing scientific research, but we know that hydrogen nuclei make up for 90% of their composition. The Sun is the nearest source of cosmic rays. The solar wind is constant source of low energy cosmic rays while Solar Flares might be accompanied by eruption of solar material (Coronal Mass Ejection) - expulsion of particles with higher intensities and energies. Observations of the cosmic rays intensities at ground level allows for effective forecast of potentially dangerous geo-effective solar eruptions. The principal objectives of the group are:


  • monitoring and forecast of energetic solar storms
  • health hazards from solar particle events
  • impacts on climate by high energy cosmic rays and solar cycle modulation
  • applications to environmental observations and measurements (soil humidity)
  • fundamental research and instruments development

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