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Solar wind
speed: 481.5 km/sec
density: 0.8 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2346 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: B3
1905 UT Aug05
24-hr: B3
1905 UT Aug05
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 05 Aug 13
None of these sunspots is actively flaring. Solar activity remains low. Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 75
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 05 Aug 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

05 Aug 2013

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 105 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 05 Aug 2013

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 2 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 5
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 6.4 nT
Bz: 2.1 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
Coronal Holes: 05 Aug 13
Earth is inside a stream of solar wind flowing from the indicated coronal hole. Credit: SDO/AIA. is now posting 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: 08-05-2013 10:55:02
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2013 Aug 05 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
01 %
01 %
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 Aug 05 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
25 %
25 %
10 %
10 %
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
15 %
15 %
30 %
25 %
40 %
35 %
Monday, Aug. 5, 2013
What's up in space

Listen to radar echoes from satellites and meteors, live on listener-supported Space Weather Radio.

Spaceweather Radio is on the air

GEOMAGNETIC UNREST: A solar wind stream is buffeting Earth's magnetic field, causing minor geomagnetic storms around the poles. High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras. Geomagnetic storm alerts: text, voice.

"I am happy to announce the opening of Aurora Season in Iceland!" says photographer Iurie Belegurschi who snapped this picture on August 5th:

For the first time in months, Northern Lights are penetrating the twilight glow around the Arctic Circle. It's a sign that summer is tilting toward autumn. Says Belegurschi, "everyone is welcome!"

More green could appear among the blue on August 5-6. NOAA forecasters estimate a 50% chance of polar geomagnetic storms as the solar wind continues to blow. Aurora alerts: text, voice.

Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery

PERSEID FIREBALLS: Earth is entering a stream of debris from Comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle, source of the annual Perseid meteor shower. Forecasters expect the shower to peak on August 12-14 when Earth transits the densest part of the debris stream. The first Perseid fireballs are, however, arriving now. NASA's All-Sky Fireball Network photographed this one on August 4th:

A fireball is a meteor brighter than Jupiter or Venus. New research from NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office shows that the Perseids produce more fireballs than any other annual meteor shower. That means the nights ahead could be sprinkled with bright flashes.

Meteor rates should remain low for the next few days as Earth penetrates the sparse outskirts of the debris stream, then skyrocket to ~100 Perseids per hour on August 12-13. Got clouds? Listen to the echoes of Perseids and other meteors on SpaceWeather's live meteor radar.

Realtime Meteor Photo Gallery

SPACE WEATHER FACT CHECK: Many readers are asking about a report in the Washington Examiner, which states that a Carrington-class solar storm narrowly missed Earth two weeks ago. There was no Carrington-class solar storm two weeks ago. On the contrary, solar activity was low throughout the month of July. The report is erroneous. The possibility of such a storm is, however, worth thinking about: A modern Carrington event would cause significant damage to our high-tech society. Solar flare alerts: text, voice.

MORNING PLANETS: If you wake up before sunrise this week, look east. Three planets are preceding the sun into the dawn sky: Jupiter, Mars, and Mercury. Stephen Mudge photographed the trio (and the visiting crescent Moon) rising over Brisbane, Australia, on August 4th:

"I also created a stack of images taken every three and a half minutes as they rose," says Mudge. "All exposures were 4 seconds with a Canon 50D and 15-85mm lens at f/5.6 and 400 iso."

The crescent Moon has spent the past few mornings planet-hopping from Jupiter to Mars to Mercury. Next up: Venus. The Moon will move past the sun this week and pop up in the evening sky for a loose conjunction with Venus on August 9th and 10th. Browse the gallery for images.

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery

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

Realtime Comet Photo Gallery

  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 5, 2013 there were potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2003 DZ15
Jul 30
9.1 LD
152 m
2005 WK4
Aug 9
8.1 LD
420 m
1999 CF9
Aug 23
24.7 LD
1.1 km
2002 JR9
Aug 31
63.5 LD
1.4 km
2013 PX6
Sep 22
70.7 LD
1.1 km
1992 SL
Sep 23
70 LD
1.1 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.
  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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