Localization of the source of terrestrial neutron bursts detected in thunderstorm atmosphere

  • Babich L
  • Bochkov E
  • Kutsyk I
 et al. 
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To localize an altitude of the neutron source responsible for the neutron flux enhancements observed on the ground, numerical simulations of photonuclear production and transport to on-ground detector locations were carried out. The neutron fluence calculated for the volumetric source located at the altitudes 8–12 km is consistent with that estimated from neutron numbers measured on the ground. This altitude range is consistent with the idea that the burst of hard γ rays detected recently by Tsuchiya et al. (2007, 2009) originate from a volumetric intracloud γ ray source. Most likely, the photonuclear reactions caused by bremsstruhlung of descending relativistic runaway electron avalanches account for the neutron flux increases observed in the thunderstorm atmosphere.

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  • Leonid P. Babich

  • Evgenii I. Bochkov

  • Igor M. Kutsyk

  • Robert a. Roussel-Dupré

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