Solar wind
speed: 364.3 km/sec
density: 3.12 protons/cm3
more data: ACE, DSCOVR
Updated: Today at 1136 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C3
1928 UT Jun04
24-hr: C8
0349 UT Jun04
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2340 UT
Daily Sun: 04 Jun 23
Expand: labels | no labels
Sunspots AR3319 and AR3323 have 'beta-gamma' magnetic fields that harbor energy for M-class solar flares. Credit: SDO/HMI

Sunspot number: 112
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 04 Jun 2023

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2023 total: 0 days (0%)
2022 total: 1 day (<1%)
2021 total: 64 days (18%)
2020 total: 208 days (57%)
2019 total: 281 days (77%)
2018 total: 221 days (61%)
2017 total: 104 days (28%)
2016 total: 32 days (9%)
2015 total: 0 days (0%)
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%)
2008 total: 268 days (73%)
2007 total: 152 days (42%)
2006 total: 70 days (19%)

Updated 04 Jun 2023

Thermosphere Climate Index
today: 19.94x1010 W Warm
Max: 49.4
x1010 W Hot (10/1957)
Min: 2.05
x1010 W Cold (02/2009)
explanation | more data: gfx, txt
Updated 03 Jun 2023

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 165 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 04 Jun 2023

Cosmic Rays Solar Cycle 25 is intensifying, and this is reflected in the number of cosmic rays entering Earth's atmosphere. Neutron counts from the University of Oulu's Sodankyla Geophysical Observatory show that cosmic rays reaching Earth are slowly declining--a result of the yin-yang relationship between the solar cycle and cosmic rays.

Oulu Neutron Counts

Percentages of the Space Age average:
today: -0.0% Average
48-hr change: -0.6%
Max: +11.7% Very High
Min: -32.1% Very Low (06/1991)
explanation | more data
Updated 04 Jun 2023 @ 0700 UT

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/Ovation
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 4.00 unsettled
24-hr max: Kp= 4.00
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 8.20 nT
Bz: -0.95 nT south
more data: ACE, DSCOVR
Updated: Today at 1136 UT
Coronal Holes: 04 Jun 23

Solar wind flowing from this pair of coronal holes could reach Earth on June 4.
Credit: SDO/AIA

Noctilucent Clouds
Bad news: NASA's AIM spacecraft, which monitors noctilucent clouds, may be dead due to problems with an onboard battery. Mission controllers have not yet given up all hope, so stay tuned.
Switch view:Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctic Peninsula, East Antarctica, Polar
Updated Jun04
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2023 Jun 04 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
35 %
35 %
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: 2023 Jun 04 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
15 %
05 %
05 %
01 %
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
15 %
15 %
15 %
15 %
10 %
05 %
Sunday, Jun. 4, 2023
What's up in space

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DAYTIME METEOR SHOWER: The annual Arietid meteor shower peaks tomorrow, June 5th. It's a strong shower, but the meteors are difficult to see because the sun is up when the shower is most intense. The Arietids are a rare daytime meteor shower. Sky watchers who want to see an Arietid are encouraged to look east during the dark hour just before dawn on Monday. Earth-grazing Arietids are long, bright and beautiful. [more]

THE THERMOSPHERE IS HEATING UP: If you're a satellite, this story is important. A series of geomagnetic storms in 2023 has pumped terawatts of energy into Earth's upper atmosphere, helping to push its temperature and height to a 20-year high. Air surrounding our planet is now touching satellites in Earth orbit and dragging them down.

"Blame the sun," says Martin Mlynczak of NASA Langley. "Increasing solar activity is heating the top of the atmosphere. The extra heat has no effect on weather or climate at Earth's surface, but it's a big deal for satellites in low Earth orbit."

Above: A severe geomagnetic storm on March 24, 2023, photographed by Michael Underwood from Yellowstone National Park

Mlynczak is an expert on the temperature up there. For 20 years he has been using the SABER instrument on NASA's TIMED satellite to monitor infrared emissions from "the thermosphere," the uppermost layer of the atmosphere.

"Right now we’re seeing some of the highest readings in the mission's 21.5 year history," he says.

The thermosphere is exquisitely sensitive to solar activity, readily absorbing energy from solar flares and geomagnetic storms. These storms have been coming hard and fast with the recent rise of Solar Cycle 25.

"There have been five significant geomagnetic storms in calendar year 2023 that resulted in marked increases in the amount of infrared radiation (heat) in Earth's thermosphere," says Mlynczak. "They peaked on Jan. 15th (0.59 TW), Feb. 16th (0.62 TW), Feb. 27th (0.78 TW), Mar. 24th (1.04 TW), and April 24th (1.02 TW)."

The parenthetical values are TeraWatts (1,000,000,000,000 Watts) of infrared power observed by SABER during each storm. The sensor obtains these numbers by measuring infrared radiation emitted from nitric oxide and carbon dioxide molecules in the thermosphere.

Above: NASA's daily Thermosphere Climate Index tracks thermal energy in Earth's upper atmosphere. So far, Solar Cycle 25 is far ahead of Solar Cycle 24. Credit: Linda Hunt

"The two storms exceeding 1 TW are the seventh and eighth strongest storms observed by SABER over the past 21.5 years," he says. "It is interesting to note that each successive storm in 2023 is generally stronger than its predecessors."

Actually, it doesn't take a strong storm to cause problems. In Feb. 2022, a minor geomagnetic storm dumped enough heat into the thermosphere that 38 newly launched Starlink satellites fell out of the sky. SpaceX has since started launching their Starlinks to higher initial altitudes to avoid the drag.

If current trends continue, the thermosphere will warm even more in 2023 and 2024. This is a matter of concern because Earth's population of active satellites has tripled since SpaceX started launching Starlinks in 2019. The growing constellation of 4100 Starlinks now provides internet service to more than a million customers. An extreme geomagnetic storm like the Halloween Storms of 2003 could shift the positions of these satellites by many 10s of kilometers, increasing the risk of collisions and causing some of the lowest ones to de-orbit.

Stay tuned as the warming continues.

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery
Free: Newsletter

SOLAR ECLIPSE CRYSTAL PYRAMID: On Aug. 21, 2017, during the Great American Solar Eclipse, the students of Earth to Sky Calculus launched 11 space weather balloons from the path of totality. The armada soared into the stratosphere, touching the shadow of the Moon more than 100,000 feet above Earth's surface. This pyramid hitched a ride:

You can have it for $159.95. With the sun, Earth, and Moon perfectly aligned, the faces of the 5-sided crystal caught the reflection of the eclipsed sun. Watch the video! The pyramid comes with a gift card showing the crystal floating at the top of Earth's atmosphere and passing through the Moon's shadow. The interior of the card tells the story of the flight and confirms that this gift has been to the edge of space and back again.

Far Out Gifts: Earth to Sky Store
All sales support hands-on STEM education

Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery
Free: Newsletter

  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 Jun 03, 2023, the network reported 3 fireballs.
(3 sporadics)

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 June 4, 2023 there were 2335 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
Velocity (km/s)
Diameter (m)
2023 KT4
8.1 LD
2023 KT1
10 LD
2012 KP24
10.3 LD
2023 KE5
5.9 LD
2023 JM1
10.1 LD
2023 KZ2
12.4 LD
2023 KS2
10.3 LD
2023 JE5
17.6 LD
2023 JR2
17 LD
2023 HO18
1.2 LD
2023 KW2
11.8 LD
2018 KR
6.5 LD
2017 UJ2
5.3 LD
2023 JB3
14.1 LD
8.3 LD
2022 WN4
10.8 LD
2020 DB5
11.3 LD
2023 HL
13.5 LD
2016 LK49
17.4 LD
2023 HF1
12.5 LD
17.4 LD
2008 LG2
10.5 LD
2013 WV44
9.1 LD
2022 MM1
9.5 LD
2020 NC
13.9 LD
2023 HO6
5.3 LD
2019 LH5
14.9 LD
2018 NW
18 LD
2018 UY
7.4 LD
2020 UQ3
3.2 LD
2022 GX2
11.9 LD
2020 OM
8.5 LD
2015 MA54
16.6 LD
2018 BG5
10.7 LD
2020 PP1
17 LD
2021 BD3
14 LD
2016 AW65
16.6 LD
Notes: LD means "Lunar Distance." 1 LD = 384,401 km, the distance between Earth and the Moon. 1 LD also equals 0.00256 AU.
  Cosmic Rays in the Atmosphere

SPACE WEATHER BALLOON DATA: Almost once a week, and the students of Earth to Sky Calculus fly space weather balloons to the stratosphere over California. These balloons are equipped with sensors that detect secondary cosmic rays, a form of radiation from space that can penetrate all the way down to Earth's surface. Our monitoring program has been underway without interruption for 7 years, resulting in a unique dataset of in situ atmospheric measurements.

Latest results (July 2022): Atmospheric radiation is decreasing in 2022. Our latest measurements in July 2022 registered a 6-year low:

What's going on? Ironically, the radiation drop is caused by increasing solar activity. Solar Cycle 25 has roared to life faster than forecasters expected. The sun's strengthening and increasingly tangled magnetic field repels cosmic rays from deep space. In addition, solar coronal mass ejections (CMEs) sweep aside cosmic rays, causing sharp reductions called "Forbush Decreases." The two effects blend together to bring daily radiation levels down.

.Who cares? Cosmic rays are a surprisingly "down to Earth" form of space weather. They can alter the chemistry of the atmosphere, trigger lightning, and penetrate commercial airplanes. According to a study from the Harvard T.H. Chan school of public health, crews of aircraft have higher rates of cancer than the general population. The researchers listed cosmic rays, irregular sleep habits, and chemical contaminants as leading risk factors. A number of controversial studies (#1, #2, #3, #4) go even further, linking cosmic rays with cardiac arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death.

Technical notes: The radiation sensors onboard our helium balloons detect X-rays and gamma-rays in the energy range 10 keV to 20 MeV. These energies span the range of medical X-ray machines and airport security scanners.

Data points in the graph labeled "Stratospheric Radiation" correspond to the peak of the Regener-Pfotzer maximum, which lies about 67,000 feet above central California. When cosmic rays crash into Earth's atmosphere, they produce a spray of secondary particles that is most intense at the entrance to the stratosphere. Physicists Eric Regener and Georg Pfotzer discovered the maximum using balloons in the 1930s and it is what we are measuring today.

  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.
  information about sunspots based on the latest NOAA/USAF Active Region Summary
Starlink Satellite Statistics
  current counts of failed and deployed Starlink satellites from Jonathan's Space Page
The Aerospace Corporation
  Authoritative predictions of space junk and satellite re-entries
Daily Sunspot Summaries
  from the NOAA Space Environment Center
NOAA 27-Day Space Weather Forecasts
  fun to read, but should be taken with a grain of salt! Forecasts looking ahead more than a few days are often wrong.
Aurora 30 min forecast
  from the NOAA Space Environment Center
Live Aurora Webcam
  from Lights over Lapland
  the underlying science of space weather

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NASA Near Earth Asteroid Home Page

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