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SpaceWeather.com -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
 
Solar wind
speed: 533.4 km/sec
density: 0.8 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2344 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C3
2213 UT Aug01
24-hr: C4
0732 UT Aug01
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 01 Aug 11
Sunspot 1261 has a "beta-gamma-delta" magnetic field that harbors energy for X-class solar flares. Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 128
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 31 Jul 2011

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

Updated 31 Jul 2011


The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 119 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 31 Jul 2011

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 1 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 3
quiet
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 3.4 nT
Bz: 1.3 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2345 UT
Coronal Holes: 01 Aug 11
Earth is inside a solar wind stream flowing from the indicated coronal hole. Credit: SDO/AIA.
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2011 Aug 01 2200 UTC
FLARE
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
CLASS M
60 %
60 %
CLASS X
10 %
10 %
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 Aug 01 2200 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
05 %
05 %
MINOR
05 %
01 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
05 %
MINOR
05 %
01 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
 
Monday, Aug. 1, 2011
What's up in space
 

Turn your cell phone into a field-tested satellite tracker. Works for Android and iPhone.

 
Satellite flybys

DAWN'S SMOOTH MOVE: NASA's ion-propelled Dawn spacecraft entered orbit around Vesta last month in an unusual way. Today's story from Science@NASA explains Dawn's smooth move and unveils the first full-frame image of the giant asteroid. Click here.

GEOMAGNETIC ACTIVITY: A solar wind stream is buffeting Earth's magnetic field and causing intermittent geomagnetic activity around the poles. The peak so far has been a G1-class storm that lasted for several hours around the end of July 30th. "I received a storm alert from Space Weather Phone," says Bob Johnson of Saskatoon Saskatchewan. "When I dashed outside, there were big-time auroras." He recorded the scene in this 25-second exposure:

NOAA forecasters estimate a ~20% chance of more such storms on July 31st as the solar wind continues to blow. High-latitude sky watchers should remain alert for auroras especially in the southern hemisphere where skies are winter-dark. Aurora alerts: text, voice.

July 2011 Aurora Gallery
[previous Julys: 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003]

TODAY'S BONUS SHOTS: ISS-Sunspot Conjunction from Agnieszka and Friedrich Deters of Minneapolis, MN; Iridescent Cloud from Pete Lawrence of Selsey, West Sussex, UK

SUNSPOT SUNSET: The biggest sunspots of Solar Cycle 24 are showing themselves through the clouds at sunset. "Yesterday evening we had a nice view of AR1260, AR1261, and AR1263 from my farm east of Plymouth, Iowa," says Steve Yezek. Two of them are circled in this snapshot:

Caution: Even when the sun is dimmed by low-hanging clouds or haze, focused sunlight can still damage your eyes. Do not look at the sun through unfiltered optics of any kind. A White Light Solar Observing System is the best way to monitor these great sunspots.

Sunspot 1261 has a "beta-gamma-delta" magnetic field that harbors energy for X-class solar flares. Any such eruptions today would be geo-effective as the sunspot is squarely facing Earth. Solar flare alerts: text, voice.

more images: from M.Taha Ghouchkanlu of Kashan, Iran; from Alan Friedman of Buffalo, NY; from David Cortner of Rutherford College, NC; from John Stetson of Falmouth, Maine


2011 Noctilucent Cloud Gallery
[previous years: 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009]

  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 1, 2011 there were 1241 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Mag.
Size
2007 DD
Jul 23
9.3 LD
--
31 m
2003 BK47
Jul 26
77.6 LD
--
1.1 km
2011 OD18
Jul 28
0.5 LD
--
24 m
2009 AV
Aug 22
49.7 LD
--
1.1 km
2003 QC10
Sep 18
50 LD
--
1.2 km
2004 SV55
Sep 19
67.5 LD
--
1.2 km
2007 TD
Sep 23
3.8 LD
--
58 m
2002 AG29
Oct 9
77.1 LD
--
1.0 km
2000 OJ8
Oct 13
49.8 LD
--
2.5 km
2009 TM8
Oct 17
1.1 LD
--
8 m
2011 FZ2
Nov 7
75.9 LD
--
1.6 km
2005 YU55
Nov 8
0.8 LD
--
175 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
Science Central
 
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Trade Show Displays
   
  more links...
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