Artists impression of the twin STEREO satellites

The Heliospheric Imager for the NASA STEREO Mission

Part of the SECCHI Consortium

Using heliospheric imaging for space weather application

A landmark paper Harrison et al. 2017, Space Weather 15, 985, 10.1002/2017SW001633 considers lessons learnt from published studies of heliospheric imagery in the context of its application to space weather. This work reviews a cross section of scientific analyses that have exploited STEREO/HI imagery, in particular, and discusses their relevance to operational predictions of CME arrivals at Earth and elsewhere.

The authors assert that the potential benefit of heliospheric images to the provision of accurate CME arrival predictions on an operational basis, although as yet not fully realized, is significant and assert that heliospheric imagery is central to any credible space weather mission, particularly one located at a vantage point off the Sun-Earth line.

CME Images from STEREO
A sequence of six images from February 2011 illustrating the passage of a CME through the combined STEREO-A COR2, HI-1 and HI-2 field-of-view. The white near horizontal line denotes the position angle of Earth; the location of Earth corresponds to the white dot at the intersection of that line with the near-vertical curve.