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Solar wind
speed: 326.2 km/sec
density: 5.4 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C3
2246 UT Mar12
24-hr: C3
2246 UT Mar12
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 12 Mar 13
New sunspot AR1696 is growing rapidly, but it is not yet producing flares. Solar activity remains low. Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 105
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 12 Mar 2013

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
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%)
Since 2004: 821 days
Typical Solar Min: 486 days

Update
12 Mar 2013

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 120 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 12 Mar 2013

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: 2.3 nT
Bz: 2.2 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
Coronal Holes: 12 Mar 13
There are no large equatorial coronal holes on the Earthside of the sun. Credit: SDO/AIA.
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2013 Mar 12 2200 UTC
FLARE
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
CLASS M
15 %
15 %
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: 2013 Mar 12 2200 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
10 %
20 %
MINOR
01 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
15 %
MINOR
15 %
25 %
SEVERE
10 %
25 %
 
Tuesday, Mar. 12, 2013
What's up in space
 

Metallic photos of the sun by renowned photographer Greg Piepol bring together the best of art and science. Buy one or a whole set. They make a stellar gift.

 
Metallic pictures of the Sun

QUIET SUN: Solar activity is low. NOAA forecasters estimate a 15% chance of M-class flares and a scant 1% chance of X-class flares during the next 24 hours. Solar flare alerts: text, voice.

PHOTO-OP TONIGHT: Tonight, March 12th, Comet Pan-STARRS (C/2011 L4) is getting together with the slender crescent Moon for a beautiful sunset conjunction. The only question is, will you be able to see it? Naked-eye observers are having trouble finding the comet in bright twilight. The good news is, it only takes a couple of seconds of exposure time to produce a picture like this:

"This is a 2-second exposure I made using my Canon 2Ti digital camera set at ISO 800," says Russell Vallelunga of Phoenix, Arizona. "Comet Pan-STARRS was even more impressive tonight (March 11th) than last night, being much higher in the sky."

Add the crescent Moon to this scene and presto! -- a fabulous photo-op. Look low and west after sunset for the Moon and Pan-STARRS only a few degrees apart. Let the Moon guide you to the comet; it is visible to the naked eye if you know where to look. Binoculars are helpful, too. Sky maps: March 12, March 13.

More: NASA video, 3D orbit, ephemeris, light curves.

Realtime Comet Photo Gallery

MAGNETIC ERUPTION ON MARCH 12th: A magnetic filament in the sun's northern hemisphere erupted today, March 12th, around 1107 UT. Extreme ultraviolet telescopes onboard NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the action:

The source of the explosion was active region AR1690 on the sun's central meridian. Although AR1690 is almost directly facing our planet, debris from the blast might miss Earth. A CME emerging from the blast site appears to be heading mostly north of the sun-Earth line. Stay tuned for updates about a possible glancing blow in 2-to-3 days. Aurora alerts: text, voice.

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery


Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery


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

  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 12, 2013 there were potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Size
2013 EC20
Mar 9
0.4 LD
7 m
2013 ET
Mar 9
2.5 LD
102 m
2013 EN20
Mar 10
1.2 LD
7 m
2013 EA29
Mar 14
3.5 LD
22 m
2007 EO88
Mar 18
4.4 LD
23 m
1993 UC
Mar 20
49 LD
3.8 km
2013 ES11
Mar 22
6.3 LD
87 m
1997 AP10
Mar 28
45.9 LD
1.8 km
2010 GM23
Apr 13
3.9 LD
50 m
2005 NZ6
Apr 29
24.9 LD
1.3 km
2001 DQ8
Apr 30
74.3 LD
1.1 km
2004 BV102
May 25
69.9 LD
1.4 km
1998 QE2
May 31
15.2 LD
2.2 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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