Relationship of the characteristics of large Forbush decreases and the heliolongitude of their sources

In this investigation the different features and characteristics of Forbush decreases, with emphasis on large For- bush decreases (≥4%) and their association to solar sources, are being examined. According to the heliolongitude of the solar source, the events under study were separated into three subcategories: western (21º ≤ heliolongitude ≤ 60º), eastern (-60º ≤ heliolongitude ≤ -21º) and central (-20º ≤ heliolongitude ≤ 20º). The selected events cover the time period 1967 - 2017. The ‘Global Survey Method’ was used for analyzing the Forbush decreases, along with data on solar flares, solar wind speed, geomagnetic indices (Kp and Dst), and interplanetary magnetic field. In ad - dition, the superimposed epoch method was applied in order to plot the time profiles for the aforementioned group of events. This detailed analysis reveals interesting results concerning the features of cosmic ray decreases in re- gard to the heliolongitude of the solar sources. Moreover, it is also shown that large Forbush decreases, regardless of the heliolongitude of the solar source, are accompanied by increased geomagnetic activity and increased aniso- tropy, including anisotropy before the events, which can serve as a typical precursor of Forbush decreases.

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