Science news and information about the Sun-Earth environment.


Solar Wind

velocity: km/s
More about these data
Updated: Today at UT

Meteor Rates (24 hr max.)
visual: 3 per hr
(89 MHz): 25 per hr
More about these data
Updated: 09 Nov 2000

Sunspot Number: 171
More about sunspots
Updated: 08 Nov 2000

Daily Sun: 9 Nov 2000
The sun is littered with spots, but none have magnetic fields more complex than beta-class. Forecasters estimate a 50% chance of M-class solar flares.

Coronal Holes:

Solar wind gusts from this coronal hole should arrive at Earth by Sunday. Image credit: SOHO Extreme Ultraviolet Telescope.
More about coronal holes


Solar Flares: Probabilities for a medium-sized (M-class) or a major (X-class) solar flare during the next 24/48 hours are tabulated below.
Updated at 2000 Nov 08 2200 UT

FLARE 24 hr 48 hr
CLASS M 50 % 50 %
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 2000 Nov 08 2200 UT

24 hr 48 hr
ACTIVE 20 % 20 %
MINOR 05 % 05 %
SEVERE 01 % 01 %

High latitudes
24 hr 48 hr
ACTIVE 25 % 25 %
MINOR 10 % 10 %
SEVERE 05 % 05 %

What's Up in Space -- 9 Nov 2000
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ONGOING RADIATION STORM: The flux of high-energy protons near Earth is now ~100,000 times greater than normal following a powerful solar flare at 2330 GMT (6:30 pm EST) on Nov. 8th.

The effects of this severe S4-class radiation storm, which is the 4th largest since 1976, include: HF radio propagation over Earth's polar regions may fade or black out altogether during the storm. Earth-orbiting satellites are likely to experience electronic glitches. Astronauts are safe so long as they avoid extra-vehicular activities.

Right: the many streaks and dots peppering this SOHO coronagraph animation are high-energy particles striking the spacecraft's CCD camera.

SOHO coronagraphs also spotted a bright coronal mass ejection (CME) soon after the solar flare. Although the eruption was near active region 9218 on the Sun's western limb, there are hints in the clouded coronagraph images of a "halo" (Earth-directed) CME. If so, the disturbance could strike our planet's magnetosphere late Friday or Saturday and trigger aurora.

FAST MOVING ASTEROID: On Nov. 7, 2000, a 250-meter wide asteroid named 2000 UG11 zipped past our planet just 6.1 times farther away than the Moon. A series of movies shows how the apparent speed of the asteroid rapidly increased in the early days of November and then peaked at 29 degrees per day as the space rock made its closest approach to Earth. Amateur astronomers with 8 inch or larger telescopes can still spot 2000 UG11 for themselves as it slowly fades this week. [ephemeris for observers]

RECENT AURORA: Geomagnetic storms on Nov. 3rd and Nov. 6th triggered beautiful Northern Lights. (Click on the dates for images.)

METEOR OUTLOOK: The early-November Taurids take center stage this week as the phase of the Moon becomes full. November's main event, the Leonids, are just around the corner. [details] Updated Nov. 3, 2000


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Nov. 7, 2000: Much Ado about 2000 SG344 -- In 2071 a relic of NASA's earliest space exploration efforts might return to Earth, if current estimates are confirmed.

Oct. 26, 2000: Lunar Leonids -- On Nov. 17, 2000, the moon will plow through a stream of debris from comet Tempel-Tuttle.

Oct. 10, 2000: The Moonlit Leonids 2000 -- Our planet is heading for a minefield of cosmic dust streams laid down by periodic comet Tempel-Tuttle. The result could be a series of meteor outbursts on Nov. 17 and 18, 2000.

Sept. 28, 2000: Bright Planets and Random Meteors -- This week's new Moon sets a dark stage for a sporadic meteor show featuring a cast of eye-catching stars and planets.

Sept. 20, 2000: A Good Month for Asteroids -- Five Near-Earth Asteroids flew past our planet during the month of September.

Sept. 13, 2000: A Surprising Coronal Mass Ejection -- A solar filament collapsed and fell to the surface of the Sun, spawning a coronal mass ejection that forecasters didn't expect.

Sept. 5, 2000: Sunbathing at Solar Max -- NASA scientists say that solar maximum is now in full swing. Does that mean you're more likely to suffer a sunburn at the beach? This story reveals the answer.

Sept. 1, 2000: A Close Encounter with a Space Rock -- A half-kilometer wide asteroid zooms past Earth barely 12 times farther from our planet than the Moon.

Aug. 14, 2000: The Extraordinary Geomagnetic Perseid Meteor Shower -- A coronal mass ejection hit Earth's magnetosphere just before the peak of the 2000 Perseid meteor shower.

Aug. 8, 2000: Perseid Dawn -- Stargazers could spot as many as 100 Perseid meteors per hour before dawn on August 12.


Editor's Note: Space weather forecasts that appear on this site are based in part on data from NASA and NOAA satellites and ground-monitoring stations. These predictions are not necessarily sanctioned by either organization.

Essential Web 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.

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 --a gallery of up-to-date solar pictures from the National Solar Data Analysis Center at the Goddard Space Flight Center.

The Latest Space Weather Values -- from the NOAA Space Environment Center.

List of Potentially Hazardous Asteroids -- from the Harvard Minor Planet Center

Real-time Solar Wind Data -- from NASA's ACE spacecraft.

More Real-time Solar Wind Data -- from the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory Proton Monitor.

Aurora Forecast --from the University of Alaska's Geophysical Institute

USGS Magnetic Observatories -- near real-time geomagnetic data from the US Geological Survey.

Daily Solar Flare and Sunspot Data -- from the NOAA Space Environment Center.

Quarterly Solar Flare and Sunspot Data: January - March 2000 -- from the NOAA Space Environment Center.

Quarterly Solar Flare and Sunspot Data: April - June 2000 -- from the NOAA Space Environment Center.

Quarterly Solar Flare and Sunspot Data: July - Sept 2000 -- from the NOAA Space Environment Center.

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