You are viewing the page for Oct. 10, 2010
  Select another date:
<<back forward>> -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
Solar wind
speed: 327.4 km/sec
density: 6.0 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2120 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: A8
2000 UT Oct10
24-hr: B4
0940 UT Oct10
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2340 UT
Daily Sun: 10 Oct 10
Sunspot 1112 is growing but does not yet pose a threat for strong flares. Credit: SDO/HMI. 2-day movie: 8 MB mpg
Sunspot number: 12
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 09 Oct 2010

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2010 total: 45 days (16%)
2009 total: 260 days (71%)
Since 2004: 813 days
Typical Solar Min: 486 days
explanation | more info
Updated 09 Oct 2010

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 76 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 09 Oct 2010

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 0 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 1
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 4.6 nT
Bz: 2.3 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2121 UT
Coronal Holes: 09 Oct 10
A minor solar wind stream flowing from this coronal hole could hit Earth's magnetic field on Oct. 9th and 10th. Credit: SDO/AIA.
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2010 Oct 10 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: 2010 Oct 10 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
25 %
15 %
05 %
01 %
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
30 %
30 %
10 %
05 %
01 %
01 %
Sunday, Oct. 10, 2010
What's up in space

AURORA ALERTS: Did you miss the Northern Lights? Next time get a wake-up call from Space Weather PHONE


SPACE PLANE GOES MISSING: The US Air Force's X-37B space plane has gone missing. Amateur satellite watchers who routinely monitor the secret mini-shuttle failed to sight it at expected times on Oct. 7th and 9th. It's possible that the X-37B has landed. More likely, the space plane has maneuvered into a new orbit and will be recovered again in the nights ahead. Stay tuned for updates.

ACTIVE REGION 1112: Emerging sunspot 1112 is connected to a vast network of dark magnetic filaments looping around the sun's southeastern limb. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory took this picture of the region just hours ago:

Filaments such as these have a habit of erupting. Will the fact that they are rooted in a sunspot make them more--or less--stable? No one knows. The magnetohydrodynamics of sunspots is so complex, not even the most powerful supercomputers on Earth can predict when they will erupt. Readers with solar telescopes are encouraged to monitor this region for unexpected developments.

more images: from Ingmar Glass of Bavaria, Germany; from Cai-Uso Wohler of Bispingen, Germany; from Larry Alvarez of Flower Mound, Texas

CRESCENT PLANET: Venus is moving between Earth and the sun and, in the process, turning its night side toward us. From the terrestrial point of view, only a sliver of Venus remains illuminated. Dennis Put sends this picture of the crescent planet from Brielle, The Netherlands:

"Even modest equipment will allow Venus to be viewed as a crescent disk," says Put. "This image was taken in infrared light using a a 9-inch Celestroon telescope and a DMK21 camera."

The trick is finding Venus. Because the planet is so close to the sun, it hangs very close to the western horizon after sunset. Any low trees or buildings will block the view. One possibility: look before sunset. Venus is actually bright enough to be seen in blue sky. Sky & Telescope makes the following recommendation: "The time to view Venus is in daylight long before sunset — but don't accidentally sweep up the sun! In mid-afternoon, place your scope in the shadow of a building or other obstacle where you have a clear view of the sky 28° to 21° to the sun's left." Observing from inside a shadow means the sun will be safely hidden while you scan the suggested region of sky for Venus. Try it!

more images: from Mariusz Rudziński of Mirostowice Dolne, Poland; from Stephen Williams of Chabot Space and Science Center, Oakland, California;

Sept. 2010 Northern Lights Gallery
[previous Septembers: 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2002, 2001, 2000]

  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 October 10, 2010 there were 1149 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2010 TQ19
Oct 8
9.6 LD
37 m
2010 TS19
Oct 10
3.7 LD
31 m
2010 TD54
Oct 12
0.1 LD
7 m
2010 TB54
Oct 13
6.1 LD
19 m
1999 VO6
Oct 14
34.3 LD
1.8 km
2010 TK
Oct 16
4.5 LD
37 m
1998 TU3
Oct 17
69.1 LD
5.2 km
2010 TG19
Oct 22
1.1 LD
70 m
1998 MQ
Oct 23
77.7 LD
1.9 km
2007 RU17
Oct 29
39.2 LD
1.1 km
2003 UV11
Oct 30
5 LD
595 m
3838 Epona
Nov 7
76.8 LD
3.4 km
2005 QY151
Nov 16
77.7 LD
1.3 km
2008 KT
Nov 23
5.6 LD
10 m
2002 EZ16
Nov 30
73.9 LD
1.0 km
2000 JH5
Dec 7
47 LD
1.5 km
2010 JL33
Dec 9
16.6 LD
1.3 km
2008 EA32
Jan 7
76.5 LD
2.1 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
Science Central
  more links...
2010 Perseid meteor shower
Toys which are out of this world from
space weather alerts
outdoor lighting
Superior Labels - Out of this World!
Christmas Cards
satellite tracking
Compare air travel around the globe with Airfares Flights
©2010 All rights reserved. This site is penned daily by Dr. Tony Phillips.

©2019 All rights reserved.