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SpaceWeather.com -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids

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Science news and information about the Sun-Earth environment.

SPACE WEATHER
Current
Conditions

Solar Wind
speed: 279.5 km/s
density:
1.6 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2246 UT


X-ray Solar Flares

6-hr max:
B3 1730 UT Nov08
24-hr: B6 1230 UT Nov08
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2245 UT

Daily Sun: 08 Nov '06

The arrow points to a big new sunspot rotating into view over the the sun's eastern limb. Credit:
SOHO/MDI

Sunspot Number: 26
What is the sunspot number?
Updated: 07 Nov 2006

Far Side of the Sun

This holographic image reveals no sunspots on the far side of the sun. Image credit: SOHO/MDI

Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 2.0 nT
Bz:
0.1 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2247 UT

Coronal Holes:

A solar wind stream flowing from the indicated coronal hole should reach Earth on Nov. 9th or 10th. Credit: NOAA GOES-13.


SPACE WEATHER
NOAA
Forecasts

Solar Flares: Probabilities for a medium-sized (M-class) or a major (X-class) solar flare during the next 24/48 hours are tabulated below.
Updated at 2006 Nov 08 2203 UTC
FLARE 0-24 hr 24-48 hr
CLASS M 20 % 20 %
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 2006 Nov 08 2203 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr 24-48 hr
ACTIVE 35 % 25 %
MINOR 15 % 10 %
SEVERE 05 % 01 %

High latitudes
0-24 hr 24-48 hr
ACTIVE 45 % 35 %
MINOR 30 % 20 %
SEVERE 15 % 10 %

What's Up in Space -- 8 Nov 2006
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Autumn is here, and it's a wonderful time for stargazing. Find out what's up from Spaceweather PHONE.

SOLAR ACTIVITY: As expected, a big sunspot is emerging over the sun's eastern limb. Even before it rotated into view, the spot made itself known by hurling clouds of gas over the limb and unleashing intense bursts of radio waves. What's next? The sunspot is turning toward Earth, so stay tuned for space weather.

TRANSIT OF MERCURY: The transit of Mercury has begun. Mercury's tiny black silhouette first "touched" the limb of the sun at 2:12 p.m. EST (11:12 a.m. PST) and it is now continuing across the face of the star. Click on the links below to watch it, live!

live webcasts: from Japan; from Kitt Peak; from Hawaii; from NASA.


The Transit of Mercury, simulated by graphic artist Larry Koehn.

Because Mercury is so small, only a tiny fraction of the sun will be covered. So don't stare; the sun will be as blinding as ever. Instead, try to view the event through a properly-filtered solar telescope. Mercury's tiny, jet-black silhouette passing in front of solar prominences, filaments and sunspots should be a marvelous sight.

Seven years ago, in Nov. 1999, artist Mark Seibold observed a similar Transit of Mercury through an H-alpha telescope at the Oregon Museum of Science, and he made this pastel sketch:

"I could see the planet hovering in the orange hazy fog of the solar photosphere," recalls Mark. "It was an awesome sight."

Transit of Mercury Art & Photo Contest



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 8 Nov 2006 there were 825 known Potentially
Hazardous Asteroids

Oct-Nov 2006 Earth-asteroid encounters
ASTEROID

 DATE
(UT)

MISS DISTANCE

MAG.

 SIZE
2006 UC185

Oct. 23

6.3 LD

17

95 m
2006 UZ215

Oct. 27

7.6 LD

19

35 m
2006 UJ185

Oct. 30

0.7 LD

17

10 m
2006 UA216

Oct. 31

6.0 LD

16

90 m
2006 UQ216

Nov. 7

5.6 LD

21

15 m
Notes: LD is a "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 Environment Center -- The official U.S. government bureau for real-time monitoring of solar and geophysical events, research in solar-terrestrial physics, and forecasting solar and geophysical disturbances.

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. (European Mirror Site)

Daily Sunspot Summaries -- from the NOAA Space Environment Center.

Current Solar Images --a gallery of up-to-date solar pictures from the National Solar Data Analysis Center at the Goddard Space Flight Center. See also the GOES-12 Solar X-ray Imager.

Recent Solar Events -- a nice summary of current solar conditions from lmsal.com.

List of Potentially Hazardous Asteroids -- from the Harvard Minor Planet Center.

Observable Comets -- from the Harvard Minor Planet Center.

What is the Interplanetary Magnetic Field? -- A lucid answer from the University of Michigan. See also the Anatomy of Earth's Magnetosphere.

Real-time Solar Wind Data -- from NASA's ACE spacecraft. How powerful are solar wind gusts? Read this story from Science@NASA.

More Real-time Solar Wind Data -- from the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory Proton Monitor.

Lists of Coronal Mass Ejections -- from 1998 to 2001

Mirages: Mirages in Finland; An Introduction to Mirages;

NOAA Solar Flare and Sunspot Data: 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999; 2000; 2001; 2002; 2003; 2004; 2005; Jan-Mar 2006;

Space Audio Streams: (University of Florida) 20 MHz radio emissions from Jupiter: #1, #2, #3, #4; (NASA/Marshall) INSPIRE: #1; (Stan Nelson of Roswell, New Mexico) meteor radar: #1, #2;

GLOSSARY | SPACE WEATHER TUTORIAL

This site is penned daily by Dr. Tony Phillips: email


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