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Electron Acceleration Mechanisms in Thunderstorms

Thunderstorms produce strong electric fields over regions on the order of kilometer. The corresponding electric potential differences are on the order of 100 MV. Secondary cosmic rays reaching these regions may be significantly accelerated and even amplified in relativistic runaway avalanche processes. These phenomena lead to enhancements of the high-energy background radiation observed by detectors on the ground and on board aircraft. Moreover, intense submillisecond gamma-ray bursts named terrestrial gamma-ray flashes (TGFs) produced in thunderstorms are detected from low Earth orbit satellites. When passing through the atmosphere, these gamma-rays are recognized to produce secondary relativistic electrons and positrons rapidly trapped in the geomagnetic field and injected into the near-Earth space environment. In the present work, we attempt to give an overview of the current state of research on high-energy phenomena associated with thunderstorms.


Sebastien Celestin
Arxiv.org (Submitted on 31 Dec 2016)

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23-е совещание международной коллаборации JEM-EUSO 28.06.2018

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International symposium on Ultra-High-Energy Cosmic Rays, UHECR2018


This UHECR workshop will cover recent results from UHECR observations and theoretical developments as well as future plans.  The symposium will focus on the highest energy cosmic rays as well as cosmic rays at lower energies above 1 PeV, and on multi-messenger approaches.
Review talks by invited speakers and contributions including posters will be presented by experimentalists and theorists in plenary sessions.

UHECR 2018 will take place in the heart of Paris, at “Chimie Paris Tech” Campus (formerly know as the "Ecole Nationale de Chimie Supérieure de Paris ").

Event information is already available on the conference website at

https://indico.in2p3.fr/event/17063 .