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Workshop: Machine Learning and the Physical Sciences

SuNeRF: Validation of a 3D Global Reconstruction of the Solar Corona Using Simulated EUV Images

Kyriaki-Margarita Bintsi · Robert Jarolim · Benoit Tremblay · Miraflor Santos · Anna Jungbluth · James Mason · Sairam Sundaresan · Angelos Vourlidas · Cooper Downs · Ronald Caplan · Andres Munoz-Jaramillo


Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) light emitted by the Sun impacts satellite operations and communications and affects the habitability of planets. Currently, EUV-observing instruments are constrained to viewing the Sun from its equator (i.e., ecliptic), limiting our ability to forecast EUV emission for other viewpoints (e.g. solar poles), and to generalize our knowledge of the Sun-Earth system to other host stars. In this work, we adapt Neural Radiance Fields (NeRFs) to the physical properties of the Sun and demonstrate that non-ecliptic viewpoints could be reconstructed from observations limited to the solar ecliptic.To validate our approach, we train on simulations of solar EUV emission that provide a ground truth for all viewpoints. Our model accurately reconstructs the simulated 3D structure of the Sun, achieving a peak signal-to-noise ratio of 43.3 dB and a mean absolute relative error of 0.3\% for non-ecliptic viewpoints.Our method provides a consistent 3D reconstruction of the Sun from a limited number of viewpoints, thus highlighting the potential to create a virtual instrument for satellite observations of the Sun. Its extension to real observations will provide the missing link to compare the Sun to other stars and to improve space-weather forecasting.

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