Solar wind
speed: 435.2 km/sec
density: 2.6 protons/cm3
more data: ACE, DSCOVR
Updated: Today at 1644 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: A8
1337 UT Jul17
24-hr: A8
1337 UT Jul17
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 1600 UT
Daily Sun: 17 Jul 19
The sun is blank--no sunspots. Credit: SDO/HMI

Sunspot number: 0
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 17 Jul 2019

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 9 days
2019 total: 127 days (64%)
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 17 Jul 2019


Thermosphere Climate Index
today: 2.79
x1010 W Cold
Max: 49.4
x1010 W Hot (10/1957)
Min: 2.05
x1010 W Cold (02/2009)
explanation | more data
Updated 17 Jul 2019

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 67 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 17 Jul 2019

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/Ovation
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 2 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 2
quiet
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 4.3 nT
Bz: 0.1 nT north
more data: ACE, DSCOVR
Updated: Today at 1644 UT
Coronal Holes: 17 Jul 19


A stream of solar wind flowing from the indicated coronal hole should reach Earth on July 19.
Credit: SDO/AIA

Noctilucent Clouds The northern season for noctilucent clouds is underway. Monitor the daily images from NASA's AIM spacecraft to see how the clouds spread around the Arctic Circle as northern summer unfolds.
Switch view: Europe, USA, Asia, Polar
Updated at: 07-16-2019 17:55:04
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2019 Jul 16 2200 UTC
FLARE
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
CLASS M
01 %
01 %
CLASS X
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: 2019 Jul 16 2200 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
10 %
MINOR
05 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
15 %
MINOR
20 %
20 %
SEVERE
20 %
15 %
 
Wednesday, Jul. 17, 2019
What's up in space
       
 

Solar minimum is here - but even now strangely beautiful auroras are dancing around the poles. Deep inside the Arctic Circle, the expert guides of Aurora Holidays in Utsjoki, Finland, can help you chase them. Book now!

 

THE NEXT SOLAR WIND STREAM: A hole in the sun's atmosphere is facing Earth and it is spewing a stream of solar wind in our direction. Estimated time of arrival: July 19-20. Minor geomagnetic activity and high latitude auroras are possible when the gaseous material arrives. Aurora alerts: SMS Text

PARTIAL ECLIPSE OF THE MOON: Last night, when the Moon rose over Alange Castle in southern Spain, photographer Juan Manuel Pérez Rayego noticed a shadow falling across the lunar disk. It was a partial eclipse:

On July 16th, the full Moon passed through the shadow of Earth, plunging as much as 65% of the lunar disk into darkness. Only a small amount of the Moon was shadowed when Juan Manuel Pérez Rayego saw it, "but it was very beautiful," he says. Sky watchers in Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and South America saw at least part of the 3 hour eclipse. Only North Americans were excluded.

The next significant lunar eclipse won't happen until May 2021, so if you missed this one ... Mark your calendar.

more images: from Peter Rosén of Stockholm, Sweden; from Heiko Ulbricht of Saxony, Germany; from Maximilian Teodorescu of Magurele, Romania; from P-M Hedén of Vallentuna, Sweden; from Z A Hartono of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; from Anders Jangö of Nynäshamn, Sweden.

submitting Eclipse photos: Spaceweather.com's Realtime Photo Gallery is temporarily down following a hardware failure on our image server. Repairs are underway. Meanwhile, if you have a picture of the eclipse, please email it directly to Dr. Tony Phillips. Please don't forget to mention your full name, location, time, and impressions of the event.

Realtime Eclipse Photo Gallery
Note:
The photo gallery is temporarily unavailable

APOLLO 11 ANNIVERSARY SILVER DOLLAR: The 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing is only days away. To mark the occasion, the students of Earth to Sky Calculus have been flying commemorative Apollo 11 silver dollars to the stratosphere and selling them to support their cosmic ray balloon program. Buy one this week and we will fly it to the stratosphere on July 20, 2019, exactly 50 years after Neil Armstrong set foot on the Moon.

We plan to fly only a small number of these coins to the edge of space on July 20, 2019. Reserve yours for $197.95.

Created by the US Mint, the proof-quality 99% silver dollar is curved and reproduces the helmet of astronaut Buzz Aldrin. Reflected in Buzz's visor are Neil Armstrong, the United States flag, and the lunar lander. The opposite side of the coin shows Neil's iconic footprint on the Moon. Each coin comes with a greeting card showing the item in flight on the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing and a certificate of authenticity.

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


Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery
Free: Spaceweather.com Newsletter


Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery
Free:
Spaceweather.com 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 Spaceweather.com.

On Jul. 17, 2019, the network reported 24 fireballs.
(22 sporadics, 2 alpha Capricornids)

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 July 17, 2019 there were 1983 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Velocity (km/s)
Diameter (m)
2019 NW5
2019-Jul-12
18.2 LD
15.6
62
2019 KD3
2019-Jul-12
15.5 LD
8
83
2016 NJ33
2019-Jul-12
15 LD
4.5
32
2019 MW1
2019-Jul-13
7.8 LD
8.5
45
2019 NQ5
2019-Jul-14
11.5 LD
9.9
34
2019 NR3
2019-Jul-14
16.8 LD
4.8
20
2019 NF1
2019-Jul-17
19.3 LD
10
56
2019 NJ2
2019-Jul-19
13.4 LD
13.5
38
2015 HM10
2019-Jul-24
12.2 LD
9.5
68
2010 PK9
2019-Jul-26
8.2 LD
16.5
155
2019 NT1
2019-Jul-27
19 LD
3.7
14
2019 NN4
2019-Jul-29
6.6 LD
3.8
28
2006 QQ23
2019-Aug-10
19.4 LD
4.7
339
454094
2019-Aug-12
17 LD
8.2
148
2018 PN22
2019-Aug-17
17.1 LD
2.3
11
2016 PD1
2019-Aug-26
11.4 LD
5.9
65
2002 JR100
2019-Aug-27
19.4 LD
8.4
49
2018 DE1
2019-Sep-03
12.7 LD
6.6
28
2019 GT3
2019-Sep-06
19.5 LD
13.6
227
2010 RM82
2019-Sep-13
18.2 LD
14.6
23
2013 CV83
2019-Sep-13
15.7 LD
13.1
62
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.
  Cosmic Rays in the Atmosphere

SOMETHING NEW! We have developed a new predictive model of aviation radiation. It's called E-RAD--short for Empirical RADiation model. We are constantly flying radiation sensors onboard airplanes over the US and and around the world, so far collecting more than 22,000 gps-tagged radiation measurements. Using this unique dataset, we can predict the dosage on any flight over the USA with an error no worse than 15%.

E-RAD lets us do something new: Every day we monitor approximately 1400 flights criss-crossing the 10 busiest routes in the continental USA. Typically, this includes more than 80,000 passengers per day. E-RAD calculates the radiation exposure for every single flight.

The Hot Flights Table is a daily summary of these calculations. It shows the 5 charter flights with the highest dose rates; the 5 commercial flights with the highest dose rates; 5 commercial flights with near-average dose rates; and the 5 commercial flights with the lowest dose rates. Passengers typically experience dose rates that are 20 to 70 times higher than natural radiation at sea level.

To measure radiation on airplanes, we use the same sensors we fly to the stratosphere onboard Earth to Sky Calculus cosmic ray balloons: neutron bubble chambers and X-ray/gamma-ray Geiger tubes sensitive to energies between 10 keV and 20 MeV. These energies span the range of medical X-ray machines and airport security scanners.

Column definitions: (1) The flight number; (2) The maximum dose rate during the flight, expressed in units of natural radiation at sea level; (3) The maximum altitude of the plane in feet above sea level; (4) Departure city; (5) Arrival city; (6) Duration of the flight.

SPACE WEATHER BALLOON DATA: Approximately once a week, Spaceweather.com and the students of Earth to Sky Calculus fly space weather balloons to the stratosphere over California. These balloons are equipped with radiation sensors that detect cosmic rays, a surprisingly "down to Earth" form of space weather. Cosmic rays can seed clouds, trigger lightning, and penetrate commercial airplanes. Furthermore, there are studies ( #1, #2, #3, #4) linking cosmic rays with cardiac arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death in the general population. Our latest measurements show that cosmic rays are intensifying, with an increase of more than 18% since 2015:

The data points in the graph above correspond to the peak of the Reneger-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 Reneger and Georg Pfotzer discovered the maximum using balloons in the 1930s and it is what we are measuring today.

En route to the stratosphere, our sensors also pass through aviation altitudes:

In this plot, dose rates are expessed as multiples of sea level. For instance, we see that boarding a plane that flies at 25,000 feet exposes passengers to dose rates ~10x higher than sea level. At 40,000 feet, the multiplier is closer to 50x.

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.

Why are cosmic rays intensifying? The main reason is the sun. Solar storm clouds such as coronal mass ejections (CMEs) sweep aside cosmic rays when they pass by Earth. During Solar Maximum, CMEs are abundant and cosmic rays are held at bay. Now, however, the solar cycle is swinging toward Solar Minimum, allowing cosmic rays to return. Another reason could be the weakening of Earth's magnetic field, which helps protect us from deep-space radiation.

  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.
STEREO
  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
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
Heliophysics
  the underlying science of space weather
Spaceweather.com welcomes these supporters of science communication: RV Sales and CRAS, the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences and Windshield Replacement Phoenix and Breast Augmentation Phoenix and Dentist Chandler, AZ.
   
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