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Solar wind
speed: 329.3 km/sec
density: 3.5 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 0717 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C3
0156 UT Aug23
24-hr: C3
0156 UT Aug23
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 0700 UT
Daily Sun: 23 Aug 14
Sunspots AR2148 and AR2149 have 'beta-gamma' magnetic filds that harbor energy for M-class solar flares. Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 139
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 23 Aug 2014

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2014 total: 1 day (<1%)
2013 total: 0 days (0%)
2012 total: 0 days (0%)
2011 total: 2 days (<1%)
2010 total: 51 days (14%)
2009 total: 260 days (71%)

Update
23 Aug 2014

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 126 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 23 Aug 2014

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 2 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 2
quiet
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 5.1 nT
Bz: 0.1 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 0717 UT
Coronal Holes: 22 Aug 14
There are no large coronal holes on the Earthside of the sun. Credit: SDO/AIA.

Spaceweather.com posts daily satellite images of noctilucent clouds (NLCs), which hover over Earth's poles at the edge of space. The data come from NASA's AIM spacecraft. The north polar "daisy" pictured below is a composite of near-realtime images from AIM assembled by researchers at the University of Colorado's Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP).
Noctilucent Clouds
Switch view: Europe, USA, Asia, Polar
Updated at: 08-22-2014 12:55:08
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2014 Aug 22 2200 UTC
FLARE
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
CLASS M
30 %
30 %
CLASS X
05 %
05 %
Geomagnetic Storms:
Probabilities for significant disturbances in Earth's magnetic field are given for three activity levels: active, minor storm, severe storm
Updated at: 2014 Aug 22 2200 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
05 %
05 %
MINOR
01 %
01 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
15 %
MINOR
15 %
15 %
SEVERE
05 %
05 %
 
Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014
What's up in space
 

When is the best time to see auroras? Where is the best place to go? And how do you photograph them? These questions and more are answered in a new book, Northern Lights - a Guide, by Pal Brekke & Fredrik Broms.

 
Northern Lights - a Guide

COMET LANDING SITE SELECTION: Europe's Rosetta probe has been at Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko for two weeks, taking close-up pictures and making measurements of the comet's strange landscape. According to ESA, researchers now have the data they need to start picking a landing site. This weekend, mission planners will meet to consider 10 candidate locations, with the goal of narrowing the list to 5 by Monday. Stay tuned for results!

STRATOSPHERIC SPACE WEATHER BUOY LAUNCHED: An 8-foot diameter ball of helium can be hard to handle. Just ask the students of Earth to Sky Calculus. Yesterday, one of their space weather balloons got caught in a gust of wind and almost got away:

For a good laugh, listen to the soundtrack of this launch video. Despite the troubles, the balloon did make it safely off the ground, marking the group's 58th successful launch. This particular flight was part of a year-long campaign to find out how the stratosphere responds to solar storms. The payload carrried cameras, GPS altimeters, a cryogenic thermometer, and a cosmic radiation detector more than 100,000 feet above sea level. Sensors gathered data for 2.5 hours before parachuting back to Earth. A student team is recovering the payload now. Stay tuned for updates later this weekend.

Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery

SOLAR ACTIVITY PICKS UP: A new sunspot emerging over the sun's NE limb is bringing an uptick in solar activity. AR2149 announced itself on August 21st with an impulsive M3-class solar flare. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the explosion's extreme ultraviolet flash:

UV radiation from the flare partially ionized the upper layers of Earth's atmosphere. This "Sudden Ionospheric Disturbance" altered the normal propagation of VLF (very low frequency) radio transmissions over the northern hemisphere, shown here in a recording from the Polarlightcenter in Lofoten, Norway. The disturbance has since subsided.

Because AR2149 is near the sun's eastern horizon, our view of the region is foreshortened. Evaluating the structure of its magnetic field is therefore tricky. As the sunspot turns toward Earth in the days ahead, we will get a better idea of its flare-producing potential. For now, NOAA forecasters are estimating a 25% chance of M-flares in the next 24 hours. Solar flare alerts: text, voice

Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery

WATCH OUT FOR THE CELESTIAL TRIANGLE: For the past week, early risers have enjoyed a spectacular conjunction of Venus and Jupiter in the sunrise sky. The two brightest planets in the solar system have been as close as 0.2o, beaming with ease through city lights and the rosy glow of dawn itself. Now the twosome are becoming a threesome. As this photo from Abhinav Singhai of New Delhi shows, the crescent Moon is joining the show:

"We had a beautiful view of the three bright bodies rising over the India Gate," says Singhai.

Right now the Moon is moving closer to the planets. On the morning of August 23rd, the three will form an almost-equilateral triangle in the pre-dawn sky. NASA previews the meeting in this ScienceCast video.

Realtime Conjunction Photo Gallery


Realtime Comet Photo Gallery


Realtime Meteor Photo Gallery


Realtime NLC Photo Gallery


  All Sky Fireball Network

Every night, a network of NASA all-sky cameras scans the skies above the United States for meteoritic fireballs. Automated software maintained by NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office calculates their orbits, velocity, penetration depth in Earth's atmosphere and many other characteristics. Daily results are presented here on Spaceweather.com.

On Aug. 22, 2014, the network reported 20 fireballs.
(18 sporadics, 2 kappa Cygnids)

In this diagram of the inner solar system, all of the fireball orbits intersect at a single point--Earth. The orbits are color-coded by velocity, from slow (red) to fast (blue). [Larger image] [movies]

  Near Earth Asteroids
Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHAs) are space rocks larger than approximately 100m that can come closer to Earth than 0.05 AU. None of the known PHAs is on a collision course with our planet, although astronomers are finding new ones all the time.
On August 23, 2014 there were 1495 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Size
2013 RZ53
Sep 9
1.9 LD
3 m
2002 CE26
Sep 9
47.9 LD
1.8 km
2009 RR
Sep 16
2 LD
34 m
2006 GQ2
Sep 19
65.9 LD
1.1 km
2009 FG19
Sep 26
34.6 LD
1.1 km
2014 NE52
Sep 30
61.2 LD
1.1 km
2001 EA16
Oct 7
35.5 LD
1.9 km
2011 TB4
Oct 9
5.8 LD
34 m
2003 UC20
Oct 31
52.4 LD
1.0 km
Notes: LD means "Lunar Distance." 1 LD = 384,401 km, the distance between Earth and the Moon. 1 LD also equals 0.00256 AU. MAG is the visual magnitude of the asteroid on the date of closest approach.
  Essential web links
NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center
  The official U.S. government space weather bureau
Atmospheric Optics
  The first place to look for information about sundogs, pillars, rainbows and related phenomena.
Solar Dynamics Observatory
  Researchers call it a "Hubble for the sun." SDO is the most advanced solar observatory ever.
STEREO
  3D views of the sun from NASA's Solar and Terrestrial Relations Observatory
Solar and Heliospheric Observatory
  Realtime and archival images of the Sun from SOHO.
Daily Sunspot Summaries
  from the NOAA Space Environment Center
Heliophysics
  the underlying science of space weather
Space Weather Alerts
   
  more links...
 
 
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