Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2021-406
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2021-406
 
14 Jan 2022
14 Jan 2022
Status: a revised version of this preprint was accepted for the journal AMT and is expected to appear here in due course.

Measurement of vertical atmospheric density profile from the X-ray Earth occultation of the Crab Nebula with Insight-HXMT

Daochun Yu1,3, Haitao Li1,2,3, Baoquan Li1,2,3, Mingyu Ge4, Youli Tuo4, Xiaobo Li4, Wangchen Xue3,4, Yaning Liu1,2, Aoying Wang5, Yajun Zhu1,3,6, and Bingxian Luo1,3,7 Daochun Yu et al.
  • 1National Space Science Center, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100190, China
  • 2Key Laboratory of Electronics and Information Technology for Space Systems, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100190, China
  • 3University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • 4Key Laboratory of Particle Astrophysics, Institute of High Energy Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • 5School of Physical Science and Technology, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, China
  • 6State Key Laboratory of Space Weather, Beijing 100190, China
  • 7Key Laboratory of Science and Technology on Environmental Space Situation Awareness, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100190, China

Abstract. The X-ray Earth occultation sounding (XEOS) is an emerging method for measuring the neutral density in the lower thermosphere. In this paper, the X-ray Earth occultation (XEO) of the Crab Nebula is investigated by using the Insight-HXMT. The pointing observation data on the 30th September, 2018 recorded by the Low Energy X-ray telescope (LE) of Insight-HXMT are selected and analyzed. The extinction lightcurves and spectra during the X-ray Earth occultation process are extracted. A forward model for the XEO lightcurve is established and the theoretical observational signal for lightcurve is predicted. A Bayesian data analysis method is developed for the XEO lightcurve modeling and the atmospheric density retrieval. The posterior probability distribution of the model parameters is derived through the Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithm with the NRLMSISE-00 model and the NRLMSIS 2.0 model as basis functions and the best-fit density profiles are retrieved respectively. It is found that in the altitude range of 105–200 km, the retrieved density profile is 88.8 % of the density of NRLMSISE-00 and 109.7 % of the density of NRLMSIS 2.0 by fitting the lightcurve in the energy range of 1.0–2.5 keV based on XEOS method. In the altitude range of 95–125 km, the retrieved density profile is 81.0 % of the density of NRLMSISE-00 and 92.3 % of the density of NRLMSIS 2.0 by fitting the lightcurve in the energy range of 2.5–6.0 keV based on XEOS method. In the altitude range of 85–110 km, the retrieved density profile is 87.7 % of the density of NRLMSISE-00 and 101.4 % of the density of NRLMSIS 2.0 by fitting the lightcurve in the energy range of 6.0–10.0 keV based on XEOS method. The measurements of density profiles are compared with the NRLMSISE-00/NRLMSIS 2.0 model simulations and the previous retrieval results with RXTE satellite. Finally, we find that the retrieved density profile from Insight-HXMT based on the NRLMSISE-00/NRLMSIS 2.0 models is qualitatively consistent with the previous retrieved results from RXTE. This study demonstrate that the XEOS from the X-ray astronomical satellite Insight-HXMT can provide an approach for the study of the upper atmosphere. The Insight-HXMT satellite can join the family of the XEOS. The Insight-HXMT satellite with other X-ray astronomical satellites in orbit can form a space observation network for XEOS in the future.

Daochun Yu et al.

Status: closed

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on amt-2021-406', Anonymous Referee #2, 22 Jan 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Haitao Li, 18 Mar 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on amt-2021-406', Anonymous Referee #1, 05 Feb 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Haitao Li, 18 Mar 2022
    • AC3: 'Reply on RC2', Haitao Li, 18 Mar 2022

Status: closed

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on amt-2021-406', Anonymous Referee #2, 22 Jan 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Haitao Li, 18 Mar 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on amt-2021-406', Anonymous Referee #1, 05 Feb 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Haitao Li, 18 Mar 2022
    • AC3: 'Reply on RC2', Haitao Li, 18 Mar 2022

Daochun Yu et al.

Daochun Yu et al.

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Short summary
In this work, the measurement of vertical atmospheric density profile from the X-ray Earth occultation is investigated. The Earth’s density profile for the lower thermosphere is obtained with Insight-HXMT. It is shown that the X-ray satellite Insight-HXMT of China can be used as an X-ray atmospheric diagnostics instrument for the upper atmosphere. The Insight-HXMT satellite with other X-ray astronomical satellites in orbit can form a network for X-ray Earth occultation sounding in the future.