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Solar wind
speed: 366.3 km/sec
density: 1.9 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C2
2256 UT Aug07
24-hr: C2
2256 UT Aug07
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 07 Aug 14
Sunspot AR2134 has a 'beta-delta' magnetic field that harbors energy for M-class solar flares. Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 119
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 07 Aug 2014

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2014 total: 1 day (<1%)
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%)

07 Aug 2014

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 137 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 07 Aug 2014

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 2 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 2
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 5.8 nT
Bz: 5.1 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
Coronal Holes: 07 Aug 14
There are no large coronal holes on the Earthside of the sun. Credit: SDO/AIA. posts daily satellite images of noctilucent clouds (NLCs), which hover over Earth's poles at the edge of space. The data come from NASA's AIM spacecraft. The north polar "daisy" pictured below is a composite of near-realtime images from AIM assembled by researchers at the University of Colorado's Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP).
Noctilucent Clouds
Switch view: Europe, USA, Asia, Polar
Updated at: 08-06-2014 13:55:07
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2014 Aug 07 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
20 %
15 %
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: 2014 Aug 07 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
15 %
10 %
05 %
01 %
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
15 %
15 %
20 %
15 %
15 %
10 %
Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014
What's up in space

When is the best time to see auroras? Where is the best place to go? And how do you photograph them? These questions and more are answered in a new book, Northern Lights - a Guide, by Pal Brekke & Fredrik Broms.

Northern Lights - a Guide

MOSTLY QUIET WITH A CHANCE OF FLARES: Sunspot AR2134 has a delta-class magnetic field that harbors energy for significant eruptions. However, like every other sunspot that has crossed the solar disk in recent weeks, this one seems reluctant to erupt. NOAA forecasters estimate only a 20% chance of M-flares during the next 24 hours as the month-long spell of low solar activty continues.

PERSEID METEOR UPDATE: The Perseid meteor rate continues to increase as Earth moves deeper into the debris stream of Comet Swift-Tuttle. Last night alone, NASA's network of all-sky cameras recorded 19 Perseid fireballs over the USA. That brings the total to 90 fireballs sighted since the shower began on July 26th. Bill Cooke of NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office has plotted the orbits of all 90 fireballs:

In this diagram of the inner solar system, Earth is the pale blue dot where all the Perseid orbits (green) intersect. The path of parent comet Swift-Tuttle is traced in purple, and it is a good match to the orbits of the Perseid debris.

"The brightest Perseid we've observed so far was magnitude -6.8," notes Cooke. "That's about as bright as a crescent Moon."

Observers hope that the Perseids will remain bright in the nights ahead because the Moon is waxing full. A supermoon on August 10th threatens to outshine many faint Perseids when the shower peaks. Science@NASA previews the competition in a new video: Perseids vs. the Supermoon.

Realtime Meteor Photo Gallery

HISTORIC COMET RENDEZVOUS: For the first time ever, a spacecraft from Earth is traveling alongside a comet. Yesterday, at the end of a 10 year and 6 billion km journey, the European Space Agency's Rosetta probe reached 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. On approach, Rosetta's OSIRIS camera took this stunning picture of the comet's nucleus only 130 km away:

The image clearly shows a range of features including boulders, craters and steep cliffs. As the ESA science team noted this morning, "choosing a landing site will not be easy." More close-up shots may be found here.

Rosetta has reached the comet, but it is not in orbit yet. As this video shows, the spacecraft will spend the next month maneuvering closer and closer to the comet's core. When Rosetta dscends to within about 30 km of the surface in early September, the comet's weak gravity will be able to capture the spacecraft into a final orbit.

A full replay of Rosetta's arrival at 67P is now available here:

Realtime Comet Photo Gallery

SPONSOR A SPACE WEATHER BALLOON: This Friday, the students of Earth to Sky Calculus will continue their ongoing campaign of high-altitude research with the launch of another Space Weather Radiation Buoy. The purpose of their research is to discover how solar activity affects the ozone layer and alters levels of radiation at altitudes of interest to space tourism. They are also launching microbes to find out which species can survive in space-like conditions. Readers who wish to support this exciting student-led work can sponsor the flight with an ad or message to be launched with the payload and displayed as shown:

For $500 the students will fly your message to the edge of space and return it to you along with complete video of the flight. Also, selected still shots will be displayed on as part of our coverage of the event. Interested? Please email Dr. Tony Phillips for more information.

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery

Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery

Realtime NLC Photo Gallery

  All Sky Fireball Network

Every night, a network of NASA all-sky cameras scans the skies above the United States for meteoritic fireballs. Automated software maintained by NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office calculates their orbits, velocity, penetration depth in Earth's atmosphere and many other characteristics. Daily results are presented here on

On Aug. 7, 2014, the network reported 41 fireballs.
(19 Perseids, 16 sporadics, 5 Southern delta Aquariids, 1 alpha Capricornid)

In this diagram of the inner solar system, all of the fireball orbits intersect at a single point--Earth. The orbits are color-coded by velocity, from slow (red) to fast (blue). [Larger image] [movies]

  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 7, 2014 there were 1499 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2002 JN97
Aug 2
61.4 LD
2.0 km
2014 OV299
Aug 6
9.5 LD
23 m
2014 OF300
Aug 7
3.8 LD
23 m
2001 RZ11
Aug 17
34.2 LD
2.2 km
2013 WT67
Aug 17
16.1 LD
1.1 km
2013 RZ53
Sep 9
1.9 LD
3 m
2002 CE26
Sep 9
47.9 LD
1.8 km
2009 RR
Sep 16
2 LD
34 m
2006 GQ2
Sep 19
65.9 LD
1.1 km
2009 FG19
Sep 26
34.6 LD
1.1 km
2014 NE52
Sep 30
61.2 LD
1.0 km
2001 EA16
Oct 7
35.5 LD
1.9 km
2011 TB4
Oct 9
5.8 LD
34 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.
  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
  the underlying science of space weather
Space Weather Alerts
  more links...
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