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SpaceWeather.com -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
SPACE WEATHER
Current conditions
Solar wind
speed: 377.9 km/sec
density: 4.1 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2345 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: A0
2350 UT Nov30
24-hr: A0
0125 UT Nov30
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2350 UT
Daily Sun: 05 Dec. 09
The Earth-facing side of the sun is blank--no sunspots. Credit: SOHO/MDI
Sunspot number: 0
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 03 Dec 2009

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 12 days
2009 total: 255 days (76%)
Since 2004: 766 days
Typical Solar Min: 485 days
explanation | more info
Updated 03 Dec 2009

Far side of the Sun:
This holographic image reveals one possible sunspot on the far side of the sun. Image credit: SOHO/MDI
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 2 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 2
quiet
explanation | more data
Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 10.1 nT
Bz: 4.1 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2346 UT
Coronal Holes:
A minor solar wind stream flowing from the indicated coronal hole could reach Earth today or tomorow. Credit: SOHO Extreme UV Telescope
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2009 Dec 05 2201 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: 2009 Dec 05 2201 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
05 %
MINOR
05 %
01 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
20 %
05 %
MINOR
10 %
01 %
SEVERE
05 %
01 %
What's up in Space
December 5, 2009

SPACESHIP SIGHTINGS: Would you like a call when the space station is about to fly over your backyard? Sign up for Spaceweather PHONE.

 

GEMINID METEOR SHOWER: Mark your calendar. The Geminid meteor shower peaks on Dec. 13th and 14th when Earth passes through a stream of debris from extinct comet 3200 Phaethon. The Geminids have been intensifying in recent years, and 2009 could be the best year yet. Forecasters expect 140+ meteors per hour under the dark skies of a new Moon. [sky map]

SOLAR ACTIVITY: Something has exploded on the farside of the sun. Late yesterday, Dec. 4th, a billion-ton coronal mass ejection (CME) billowed over the sun's western limb. Click on the image to view a movie of the cloud recorded by the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory:

The blast site could be one of two farside active regions currently under surveillance by NASA's STEREO spacecraft, but those active regions don't seem to be in the right place to hurl a CME over the sun's western limb. The source might reveal itself in the days ahead as the sun's rotation turns unseen territory toward STEREO--or toward Earth. Stay tuned.

ORION AT THE BEACH: Last week, Grant Privett planted his camera and tripod in the sands of a beach on the Canary Islands. Off and on for 20 minutes, he opened the shutter to the eastern sky as moonlight washed over the waves and Orion rose into the night. Here is the result:

"The moon was waxing gibbous and produced flashes of light from breaking waves," says Privett. "All the features of the waves were evened out during the 20-minute shoot." Orion and Sirius show up as a series of broken star trails, each tiny arc corresponding to 60 seconds of open-shutter time. The sandy beach and moonlit waves combined with the stuttered constellations to produce an otherworldly ensemble.

It's that time of year. Orion the Hunter rises in the east just after sunset and seems to beckon to photographers to do something creative. Who's next?


November Northern Lights Gallery
[previous Novembers: 2008, 2007, 2006, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001]


Explore the Sunspot Cycle

       
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 December 5, 2009 there were 1084 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Nov. 2009 Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Mag.
Size
2009 UK14
Nov. 1
9.1 LD
20
29 m
2006 JY26
Nov. 2
6.7 LD
22
10 m
2000 XK44
Nov. 4
28.8 LD
13
1.1 km
2009 VA
Nov. 6
0.05 LD
12
6 m
2000 UJ1
Nov. 7
43.3 LD
15
1.2 km
2009 VT1
Nov. 9
1.4 LD
18
6 m
2000 TO64
Nov. 10
44.2 LD
14
1.9 km
2009 UK20
Nov. 12
6.5 LD
20
20 m
2009 VX
Nov. 12
2.6 LD
17
26 m
2009 VR
Nov. 13
6.6 LD
21
10 m
2009 WQ6
Nov. 16
0.9 LD
18
7 m
2009 WX7
Nov. 16
3.7 LD
18
20 m
2009 VC1
Nov. 18
6.0 LD
19
21 m
2009 WJ6
Nov. 20
0.5 LD
16
14 m
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 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 and Heliospheric Observatory
  Realtime and archival images of the Sun from SOHO.
STEREO
  3D views of the sun from NASA's Solar and Terrestrial Relations Observatory
Daily Sunspot Summaries
  from the NOAA Space Environment Center
Current Solar Images
  from the National Solar Data Analysis Center
Science Central
   
  more links...
   
©2008, SpaceWeather.com -- This site is penned daily by Dr. Tony Phillips.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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