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SpaceWeather.com -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
 
Solar wind
speed: 389.9 km/sec
density: 0.0 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2345 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: M3
2012 UT Mar07
24-hr: M3
2012 UT Mar07
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 07 Mar 11
Sunspot 1164 has a delta-class magnetic field that harbors energy for X-class flares. Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 118
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 06 Mar 2011

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2011 total: 1 day (2%)
2010 total: 51 days (14%)
2009 total: 260 days (71%)
Since 2004: 820 days
Typical Solar Min: 486 days

Updated 06 Mar 2011


The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 143 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 06 Mar 2011

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 4 unsettled
24-hr max: Kp= 4
unsettled
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 4.7 nT
Bz: 4.2 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2346 UT
Coronal Holes: 07 Mar 11
There are no large coronal holes on the Earth-side of the sun. Credit: SDO/AIA.
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2011 Mar 07 2200 UTC
FLARE
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
CLASS M
75 %
50 %
CLASS X
10 %
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: 2011 Mar 07 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
05 %
05 %
MINOR
01 %
01 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
 
Monday, Mar. 7, 2011
What's up in space
 

They came from outer space--and you can have one! Genuine meteorites are now on sale in the Space Weather Store. They make a unique Valentine's gift.

 
Own your own meteorite

EQUINOX SUN OUTAGES: Many readers reported an intermittent loss of satellite TV reception over the weekend. Was the sun to blame? Yes and no. Senior forecaster Bill Murtagh of NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center explains: "It is likely that the sun caused the problem, but not because of solar flares. Now is the time of year for the 'equinox conjunction,' when the sun lines up with the satellite and the receiving satellite dish. When this happens, radio interference from the sun competes with signals from the satellite and can create noise levels several decibels higher than normal. The problem, which typically persists for 5 to 15 minutes, is referred to as a 'sun outage' and is often confused with sunspot or solar flare activity."

SOLAR ACTIVITY: The magnetic canopy of big sunspot 1166 erupted on March 7th around 1400 UT, producing an M2-class solar flare and a bright coronal mass ejection (CME). Click on the image to launch a movie of the expanding plasma cloud:

The CME was not squarely directed at Earth. Nevertheless, the cloud will probably deliver a glancing blow to our planet's magnetic field on March 9th or 10th, possibly sparking polar geomagnetic storms. High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras.

more images and data: from Gordon Fiander of Sheffield, UK; from David Cortner of Rutherford College, NC; from Peter Desypris of Athens,Greece; from Deirdre Kelleghan of Bray, Co Wicklow Ireland

BRIGHT LIGHTS IN THE SUNSET: Last night, when the sun began to set, two bright lights popped out of the darkening twilight. Look beneath the branches of the tree for the crescent Moon and Jupiter in brilliant conjunction:


Photo details: Canon 50D, ISO1600 F/5.6, 20 mm lens, 13s

Miguel Claro took the picture from Fonte-de-Telha, near the Atlantic coast of Portugal. "It was a lovely gathering," he says.

Readers, if you missed the show on March 6th, try looking again on March 7th. The Moon is moving up and out of the sunset, and tonight it will hover, smiling, almost directly above Jupiter: sky map.

more images: from Tamás Ábrahám of Zsámbék, Hungary; from Kevin Jung of Lowell Township, Michigan; from Doug Zubenel of De Soto, Kansas; from Jacob Kuiper of De Bilt, The Netherlands; from Ben Cooper of Daytona Beach, FL; from Chris Banks of Liverpool, England; from Monika Landy-Gyebnar of Veszprem, Hungary; from Robert Hoetink of Enschede, The Netherlands


March 2011 Aurora Photo Gallery
[previous Marches: 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002]

  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 March 7, 2011 there were 1204 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Mag.
Size
2011 ED12
Feb 28
4 LD
--
20 m
2011 DE5
Mar 1
4.9 LD
--
22 m
2011 DW4
Mar 3
6.9 LD
--
15 m
2011 EN11
Mar 3
0.6 LD
--
11 m
2011 EC
Mar 6
9.2 LD
--
34 m
2011 EO11
Mar 6
1.8 LD
--
15 m
2011 EY11
Mar 7
0.3 LD
--
9 m
2011 EC12
Mar 8
3.3 LD
--
28 m
2000 PN9
Mar 10
45.5 LD
--
2.6 km
2002 DB4
Apr 15
62.5 LD
--
2.2 km
2008 UC202
Apr 27
8.9 LD
--
10 m
2009 UK20
May 2
8.6 LD
--
23 m
2008 FU6
May 5
75.5 LD
--
1.2 km
2003 YT1
May 5
65.3 LD
--
2.5 km
2002 JC
Jun 1
57.5 LD
--
1.6 km
2009 BD
Jun 2
0.9 LD
--
9 m
2002 JB9
Jun 11
71.5 LD
--
3.2 km
2001 VH75
Jun 12
42.2 LD
--
1.1 km
2004 LO2
Jun 15
9.9 LD
--
48 m
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
Conquest Graphics
  for out-of-this-world printing and graphics
Science Central
   
  more links...
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