2nd ISSI Meeting in Bern, June 2022

Photo: Stephen Lesage, University of Alabama, Huntsville, USA


The ISSI (International Space Science Institute) international team, led by Dr. Martino Marisaldi of the Birkeland Centre for Space Science, met in Bern, Switzerland on the week of June 13, 2022. The team project ‘Understanding the properties of Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes’ aims at discussing the most recent research on Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGFs) and related phenomena. This was the second and last meeting of the project, started in 2019.

TGFs are short and bright bursts of gamma radiation, associated to thunderstorm and lightning activity. TGFs exemplify how thunderstorms above our heads can turn into the most energetic natural particle accelerators on Earth. Scope of this team is to group together some of the most renowned scientists in the field of high-energy atmospheric physics to discuss about current understanding, recent results, and future developments in the field. The final goal is to provide a comprehensive view of the TGF phenomenon, identify open questions, and outline development strategies for the future.

“It has been really amazing”, says Martino Marisaldi, “We had a week full of scientific discussion, much more effective and productive than a typical conference. I came home with an improved understanding, and lots of inspiration for further projects. The quality and diversity of the new observational efforts, from space, ground, aircraft or balloon, make me think that we are really entering a new golden era for the understanding of these complex and fascinating phenomena. The format of these workshops is really valuable, and I thank ISSI for promoting and supporting it.”

The core team includes the following:

  • Martino Marisaldi (Team leader), Birkeland Center for Space Science, University of Bergen, Norway
  • Michael Briggs, University of Alabama in Huntsville, USA
  • Sebastien Celestin, University of Orleans, France
  • Olivier Chanrion, DTU Space, Denmark
  • Steven A. Cummer, Duke University, USA
  • Joseph R. Dwyer, University of New Hampshire, USA
  • Eric J. Grove, Naval Research Laboratory, USA
  • Christoph Köhn, DTU Space, Denmark
  • Alejandro Luque Estepa, Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía, IAA-CSIC Granada, Spain
  • Andrew Mezentsev, Birkeland Center for Space Science, University of Bergen, Norway
  • Marco Tavani, National Institute for Astrophysics, Italy
  • Alessandro Ursi, National Institute for Astrophysics, Italy

In addition, four PhD students from several institutions part of the project took actively part in the meeting.

Read more about ISSI here.