Geometry, Kinematics and Heliospheric Impact of a Large CME-driven Shock in 2017 September

Liu, Ying D.; Zhu, Bei; Zhao, Xiaowei
Publication Date:

A powerful coronal mass ejection (CME) occurred on 2017 September 10 near the end of the declining phase of the historically weak solar cycle 24. We obtain new insights concerning the geometry and kinematics of CME-driven shocks in relation to their heliospheric impacts from the optimal, multi-spacecraft observations of the eruption. The shock, which together with the CME driver can be tracked from the early stage to the outer corona, shows a large oblate structure produced by the vast expansion of the ejecta. The expansion speeds of the shock along the radial and lateral directions are much larger than the translational speed of the shock center, all of which increase during the flare rise phase, peak slightly after the flare maximum and then decrease. The near simultaneous arrival of the CME-driven shock at the Earth and Mars, which are separated by 156.6$^{\circ}$ in longitude, is consistent with the dominance of expansion over translation observed near the Sun. The shock decayed and failed to reach STEREO A around the backward direction. Comparison between ENLIL MHD simulations and the multi-point in situ measurements indicates that the shock expansion near the Sun is crucial for determining the arrival or non-arrival and space weather impact at certain heliospheric locations. The large shock geometry and kinematics have to be taken into account and properly treated for accurate predictions of the arrival time and space weather impact of CMEs.