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DAVID M. SMITH greyline


Associate Professor of Physics
Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, 1993

Office: Room 321, Natural Sciences II
(831) 459-2183
(831) 459-5777

dsmith (at) scipp.ucsc.edu



High-energy processes in astrophysical sources (particularly x-ray binaries), terrestrial lightning, Earth's radiation belts, and solar flares via observations of x-ray and gamma-ray emission. Design and construction of instruments to fly on spacecraft, aircraft and stratospheric balloons and observations with existing NASA satellites.



Airborne Detector for Energetic Lightning Emissions (ADELE): instrument for airplane observations of gamma-rays from lightning. First flight Summer 2009.

Balloon Array for RBSP Relativistic Electron Losses (BARREL): contributing ground station and magnetometers for multi-balloon mission to study the dynamics of the radiation belts. Flights from 2009-2014.

Instrument Scientist for RHESSI: operations and calibration of germanium detectors for the Reuven Ramaty High Energy Solar Spectroscopic Imager (RHESSI) spacecraft, launched February, 2002.

Analysis of data from high-energy satellite missions: RHESSI, RXTE, Chandra, XMM/Newton, Suzaku, and (in the future) GLAST and Mercury MESSENGER.




"Two Different Long-term Behaviors in Black-Hole Candidates: Evidence for Two Accretion Flows?" , D. M. Smith, W. A. Heindl, and J. H. Swank, Ap. J. 569, 362 (2002)

"The Reuven Ramaty High Energy Solar Spectroscopic Imager Observation of the 1809 keV Line from Galactic 26Al" , D. M. Smith, Ap. J. Letters 589, 55 (2003)

"RHESSI results on gamma-ray lines from diffuse radioactivity" , D. M. Smith, New Ast. Rev., 48, 87 (2004)

"An exceptionally bright flare from SGR 1806-20 and the origins of short-duration gamma-ray bursts" , K. Hurley, S. E. Boggs, D. M. Smith et al., Nature 434, 1098 (2005)

"XTE J1739-302 as a Supergiant Fast X-Ray Transient" , D. M. Smith et al., ApJ 638, 974 (2006)

"Hysteresis of Spectral Evolution in the Soft State of Black Hole Binary LMC X-3" , D. M. Smith, D. M. Dawson, and J. H. Swank, Ap. J. 669, 1138 (2007)

"IGR J17544-2619 in Depth With Suzaku: Direct Evidence for Clumpy Winds in a Supergiant Fast X-ray Transient" R. A. Rampy, D. M. Smith, and I. Negueruela, Ap. J. 707, 243 (2009)

High-Energy Processes in Lightning

"Terrestrial Gamma-Ray Flashes Observed up to 20 MeV" , D. M. Smith et al., Science 307, 1085 (2005)

"A comparison between Monte Carlo simulations of runaway breakdown and terrestrial gamma-ray flash observations" , J. R. Dwyer and D. M. Smith, Geophys. Res. Lett. 32, L22804 (2005)

"High-energy electron beams launched into space by thunderstorms" , J. R. Dwyer, B. W. Grefenstette, and D. M. Smith, Geophys. Res. Lett. 35, L06802 (2008)

"Spectral dependence of terrestrial gamma-ray flashes on source distance" , B. J. Hazelton, B. W. Grefenstette, D. M. Smith et al., Geophys. Res. Lett. 36, L01108 (2009)

"Estimation of the fluence of high-energy electron bursts produced by thunderclouds and the resulting radiation doses received in aircraft" , J. R. Dwyer, D. M. Smith et al., J. Geophys. Res., 115, D09206 (2010)

"First RHESSI terrestrial gamma ray flash catalog " , B. W. Grefenstette, D. M. Smith, B. J. Hazelton, and L. I. Lopez, J. Geophys. Res., 114, A02314 (2010)

"Terrestrial gamma ray flashes correlated to storm phase and tropopause height" ,D. M. Smith et al., J. Geophys. Res., 115, A00E49 (2010)

Solar Physics

"The RHESSI Spectrometer" , D. M. Smith et al.; Solar Physics, 210, 33 (2002)

"High-Resolution Spectroscopy of Gamma-Ray Lines from the X-Class Solar Flare of 2002 July 23" , D. M. Smith et al., Ap. J. Letters 595, L81 (2003)

"RHESSI Observations of the Proportional Acceleration of Relativistic >0.3 MeV Electrons and >30 MeV Protons in Solar Flares" ,A. Y. Shih, R. P. Lin, and D. M. Smith, Ap. J. Lett. 698, L152 (2009)

Terrestrial Radiation-Belt Physics

"First Detection of a Terrestrial MeV X-ray Burst" , J. E. Foat, R. P. Lin, D. M. Smith, F. Fenrich, R. Millan, I. Roth, K. R. Lorentzen, M. P. McCarthy, G. K. Parks, and J. P. Treilhou, Geophys. Res. Lett., 25, 4109 (1998)

"X-ray Observations of MeV Electron Precipitation with a Balloon-Borne Germanium Spectrometer" , R. M. Millan, R. P. Lin, D. M. Smith, K. R. Lorentzen, & M. P. McCarthy, Geophys. Res. Lett., 29, 47 (2002)

"Observation of relativistic electron precipitation during a rapid decrease of trapped relativistic electron flux" , R. M. Millan, R. P. Lin, D. M. Smith, and M. P. McCarthy, Geophys. Res. Lett. 34, L10101 (2007)


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