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SpaceWeather.com -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
SPACE WEATHER
Current conditions
Solar wind
speed: 400.4 km/sec
density: 6.0 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2246 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: A1
2015 UT Aug17
24-hr: A1
2015 UT Aug17
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2245 UT
Daily Sun: 16 Aug 07
Sunspot 966 has faded away, leaving the sun devoid of spots. Credit: SOHO/MDI
Sunspot number: 0
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 16 Aug 2007
Far side of the Sun:
This holographic image reveals one possible sunspot on the far side of the sun. Image credit: SOHO/MDI
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 2 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 3
quiet
explanation | more data
Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Updated: 2007 Aug 17 2116 UT
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 4.6 nT
Bz: 3.5 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2246 UT
Coronal Holes:
Earth is entering a solar wind stream flowing from the indicated coronal hole. Credit: SOHO Extreme Ultraviolet Telescope
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2007 Aug 17 2203 UTC
FLARE
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
CLASS M
01 %
01 %
CLASS X
01 %
01 %
Geomagnetic Storms:
Probabilities for significant disturbances in Earth's magnetic field are given for three activity levels: active, minor storm, severe storm
Updated at: 2007 Aug 17 2203 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
20 %
MINOR
01 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
20 %
25 %
MINOR
05 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
What's up in Space
August 17, 2007
Where's Saturn? Is that a UFO--or the ISS? What's the name of that star? Get the answers from mySKY--a fun new astronomy helper from Meade.

NLCs IN MOTION: "We had another georgous display of noctilucent clouds last night," reports Patrick Cobb of Fairbanks, Alaska. He photographed the display once a minute and combined the photos to create a 65-min. time-lapse movie: click to play. "Did exhaust from last week's shuttle launch contibute to this apparition?" he asks. It's possible. One thing is certain: Noctilucent cloud season is still underway.

SPACESHIP SIGHTINGS: The International Space Station (ISS) is under construction, and with each new addition the sprawling complex becomes easier to see from the ground. To the naked eye, it looks like a super-bright star gliding slowly across the night sky; a backyard telescope reveals a wonderfully detailed spaceship:


Click on the image for labels

German astronomer Stefan Seip snapped this picture on August 16th using a Canon 1Ds digital camera and a 10-inch Maksutov-Cassegrain telescope. "I moved the telescope manually while looking through the finder scope to track the ISS," he explains. "This is a single 1/500 sec. exposure at ISO 1000."

A note of scale: The station's copper-colored solar arrays span 256 feet from tip to tip, almost as wide as a football field, and the entire complex fills the eyepiece of a backyard telescope about the same as Jupiter or the rings of Saturn. Sky watchers, be alert for flybys!

more images and video: from Tom Gwilym of Renton, Washington; from Ralf Vandebergh of the Netherlands; from Hanno Falk of Flensburg, Germany (cross your eyes!); from Dirk Ewers of Hofgeismar, Germany; from Mario Weigand of Offenbach, Germany;

ANIMATED ECLIPSE: Mark your calendar: On Aug. 28th, the full moon will glide through Earth's shadow, producing a dreamy lunar eclipse visible from five continents. Graphic artist Larry Koehn created this animation of the Moon-shadow encounter:


Click on the image to view a larger version at Larry Koehn's website.

The Moon turns red when it passes through the core of Earth's shadow because--strangely--Earth's shadow is filled with red light. The red light comes from the rim of Earth itself, which is aglow with sunlight filtering through our planet's atmosphere. (Think sunsets!) A full Moon bathed in such light is unforgettable and worth waking up in the middle of the night to see: gallery.


2007 Perseid Meteor Gallery
Updated Aug. 14, 2007

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 17, 2007 there were 878 potentially hazardous asteroids.
July 2007 Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Mag.
Size
2007 FV42
July 2
53 LD
15
1.2 km
2007 MB4
July 4
7.6 LD
16
130 m
2007 DT103
July 29
9.3 LD
15
550 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 Links
NOAA Space Environment Center
  The official U.S. government bureau for real-time monitoring of solar and geophysical events, research in solar-terrestrial physics, and forecasting solar and geophysical disturbances.
Atmospheric Optics
  The first place to look for information about sundogs, pillars, rainbows and related phenomena.
Solar and Heliospheric Observatory
  Realtime and archival images of the Sun from SOHO.
Daily Sunspot Summaries
  From the NOAA Space Environment Center
Current Solar Images
  from the National Solar Data Analysis Center
  more links...
©2007, SpaceWeather.com -- This site is penned daily by Dr. Tony Phillips.
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