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SNOW MOON AND JUPITER: There's a full Moon this week, and according to folklore it has a special name: the Snow Moon, so-called because northern snow often falls most heavily in February. This year the Snow Moon is in conjunction with Jupiter. Look for the duo rising together in the east just after sunset on Feb. 3rd.
GEOMAGNETIC STORM: A stream of high-speed solar wind is bufteting Earth's magnetic field, and this is sparking G1-class geomagnetic storms around the Arctic Circle. This morning in Alaska, the auroras were bright enough to see through almost-full moonlight:
'It was an amazing show," says photographer Marketa S Murray. "The auroras were south, north ... all over the sky!"
NOAA estimates a 70% chance of continued geomagnetic storming on Feb. 2nd. High-latitude sky watchers should remain alert for auroras tonight as the solar wind continues to blow. Aurora alerts: text, voice
Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery
CLOUDTOP GREEN FLASH: Spaceweather.com reader Mila Zinkova of San Francisco was photographing the sunset on Jan. 29th when a puff of sun detached itself and turned green. It was a rare cloud-top green flash:
Atmospheric optics expert Les Cowley explains what happened: "San Francisco and the Californian coast is a world top spot for green flashes. Air is cooled by the cold offshore current and topped by warmer air from inland to provide the ideal temperature profile for sunset mirages and flashes."
"Mila's flash might be something extra special - a 'cloud-top' flash. These are seen as the sun's rays graze a distant cloud bank. Marine stratus can be trapped by temperature inversion layers which could generate some of the flashes. But that is not always the case; there is much unexplained about them."
Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery
Realtime Comet Photo Gallery
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 Feb. 2, 2015, the network reported 10 fireballs.
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]
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 February 2, 2015 there were potentially hazardous asteroids. 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.
| ||The official U.S. government space weather bureau |
| ||The first place to look for information about sundogs, pillars, rainbows and related phenomena. |
| ||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 |
| ||Realtime and archival images of the Sun from SOHO. |
| ||from the NOAA Space Environment Center |
| ||the underlying science of space weather |