You are viewing the page for Jun. 18, 2009
  Select another date:
<<back forward>>
SpaceWeather.com -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
SPACE WEATHER
Current conditions
Solar wind
speed: 318.5 km/sec
density: 2.6 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: A0
2340 UT Jun18
24-hr: A0
2340 UT Jun18
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2340 UT
Daily Sun: 18 June 09
Tiny sunspot 1021, which appeared yesterday, is already fading away. Credit: SOHO/MDI

more images: from Pavol Rapavy of Observatory Rimavska Sobota, Slovakia; from Jacob Bass√łe of Copenhagen, Denmark
Sunspot number: 11
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 17 Jun 2009

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2009 total: 131 days (78%)
Since 2004: 642 days
Typical Solar Min: 485 days
explanation | more info
Updated 17 Jun 2009

Far side of the Sun:
This holographic image reveals no sunspots on the far side of the sun. Image credit: SOHO/MDI
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 1 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 1
quiet
explanation | more data
Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 3.2 nT
Bz: 2.2 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
Coronal Holes:
There are no coronal holes on the Earth-facing side of the sun. Credit: SOHO Extreme UV Telescope
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2009 Jun 18 2201 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: 2009 Jun 18 2201 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
10 %
10 %
MINOR
05 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
10 %
10 %
MINOR
05 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
What's up in Space
June 18, 2009

AURORA ALERT: Did you sleep through the Northern Lights? Next time get a wake-up call: Spaceweather PHONE.

 

MYSTERY OF THE MISSING SUNSPOTS: Where have all the sunspots gone? Scientists studying a jet stream deep inside the sun may have found the answer. Get the full story from Science@NASA.

NOCTILUCENT CLOUDS: "Breathtaking. A crackerjack display. The best in years!" These are a few of the things veteran observers are saying about the ongoing "noctilucent storm" over Europe. The electric-blue clouds have been sighted from Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Poland, Russia and the British Isles. On June 16th, photographer Bryan Tobias was flying across the North Atlantic at 36,000 feet when he looked out the window and saw this:

"It was absolutely beautiful!" says Tobias. "We were a few hundred miles south of Greenland at the time of the display. The flight crew had no idea what the phenomenon was, but I was able to explain. No one could sleep because the clouds were so beautiful."

This could be the beginning of a very busy summer for noctilucent clouds (NLCs). For reasons no one fully understands, NLCs tend to be most active during years of solar minimum. 2009 is such a year. The sun is in the pits of the deepest solar minimum in nearly a century, and many researchers expect a banner season for these mysterious clouds.

To hunt for them, look west 30 to 60 minutes after sunset when the Sun has dipped 6o to 16o below the horizon: diagram. If you see luminous blue-white tendrils spreading across the sky, you've probably spotted a noctilucent cloud. Although noctilucent clouds appear most often at high latitudes, they have been sighted in recent years as far south as Colorado, Utah and Virginia.

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

GREAT RED SPOT RIVAL: Astronomers are monitoring a new red spot forming in Jupiter's northern hemisphere--a brick-red storm nearly as large as the Great Red Spot itself. On June 17th, amateur astronomer Christopher Go of the Philippines photographed it using an 11-inch Celestron telescope:

"I have been monitoring the new spot since mid-April," says Go. "At first it was relatively small. In late May it began to grow rapidly, and just last week John Rogers of the British Astronomical Association issued an alert for everyone to observe it."

"I hope to get an 890 nanometer 'methane band' image of this object in a few days," adds Go. "A good methane image will prove whether or not the new spot is a genuine anticyclonic storm."

Stay tuned!

EXTRA: Jupiter's atmosphere is rich in methane (CH4), a molecule which absorbs 890 nm light. Viewed through an 890 nm filter, anticyclonic storms such as the Great Red Spot rise above the absorbing methane layer and appear bright. That is why a methane band image will reveal the nature of the new spot.


Explore the Sunspot Cycle

       
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 June 18, 2009 there were 1063 potentially hazardous asteroids.
June 2009 Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Mag.
Size
2009 KR21
June 1
0.7 LD
16
21 m
2009 KL8
June 1
5.1 LD
18
63 m
2003 QO104
June 9
36.8 LD
14
2.9 km
1994 CC
June 10
6.6 LD
13
1.2 km
2001 FE90
June 28
7.0 LD
13
435 m
2002 KL6
June 28
57.5 LD
16
1.4 km
2006 MV1
June 30
9.6 LD
23
20 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 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 and Heliospheric Observatory
  Realtime and archival images of the Sun from SOHO.
STEREO
  3D views of the sun from NASA's Solar and Terrestrial Relations Observatory
Daily Sunspot Summaries
  from the NOAA Space Environment Center
Current Solar Images
  from the National Solar Data Analysis Center
Science Central
   
  more links...
   
©2008, SpaceWeather.com -- This site is penned daily by Dr. Tony Phillips.
©2013 Spaceweather.com. All rights reserved.