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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: 371.5 km/sec
density: 3.8 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2346 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: A0
2340 UT Oct22
24-hr: A0
0455 UT Oct22
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2340 UT
Daily Sun: 22 Oct. 09
The sun is blank--no sunspots. Photo credit: SOHO/MDI
Sunspot number: 0
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 21 Oct 2009

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 1 days
2009 total: 231 days (79%)
Since 2004: 742 days
Typical Solar Min: 485 days
explanation | more info
Updated 21 Oct 2009

Far side of the Sun:
This holographic image reveals no sunspots on the far side of the sun. Image credit: SOHO/MDI
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 4 unsettled
24-hr max: Kp= 4
unsettled
explanation | more data
Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 8.8 nT
Bz: 7.6 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2346 UT
Coronal Holes:
Solar wind streams flowing from the indicated coronal holes could reach Earth on Oct. 23rd or 24th. Credit: SOHO Extreme UV Telescope
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2009 Oct 22 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 Oct 22 2201 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
05 %
20 %
MINOR
01 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
05 %
20 %
MINOR
01 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
What's up in Space
October 22, 2009

AURORA ALERT: Did you miss the Northern Lights? Next time get a wake-up call: Spaceweather PHONE.

 

GEOMAGNETIC ACTIVITY: High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for Northern Lights. A sharp gust of solar wind hit Earth on Oct. 21st, and the polar magnetic field is still "ringing" with geomagnetic activity. Green skies have been reported across Scanidavia, and the display could spread to Canada and Alaska tonight.

aurora images: from Fredrik Broms of Kvaløya, Norway; from Eva Neumann of Norway; from Bjorn Jorgensen of Tromso, Norway; from John Gray of Eoropie, Isle of Lewis, Scotland; from Steve Milner of Fort St. John, BC, Canada; from Whitham D. Reeve of Anchorage, Alaska;

METEOR SHOWER UPDATE: The Orionid meteor shower is subsiding. According to the International Meteor Organization, the shower exhibited a broad peak spanning Oct. 20th through 22nd with maximum rates of 50 meteors per hour: data. A declining number of Orionids may still be seen in the nights ahead as Earth exits the debris stream of the shower's parent Comet Halley. The best time to look is during the dark hours before dawn.

Every night this week, Orionids have been flying across the skies above the Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama. To the naked eye, the meteors appeared to spray in all directions with no underlying pattern, but when NASA astronomers traced the meteors backward, they found a common origin:

"On this sky map, we plotted the starting points of more than 30 meteors," explains Bill Cooke of NASA's Meteoroid Environment Center. "Almost all of them radiated from a small region of sky in the constellation Orion--hence the name 'Orionids.'"

2009 Orionid Photo Gallery
[full story] [sky map] [previous years: 2006, 2008]

SOLAR TRANSIT: There's one nice thing about a relentlessly blank sun. The spaceships really stand out. Yesterday in South Portland, Maine, John Stetson and student D. Booth photographed the International Space Station (ISS) transiting the solar disk:

"The transit's narrow shadow path (only a few thousand yards wide) cut across a field near the Portland Airport, where we set up our solar-filtered telescope," says Stetson. "D. Booth plans to make a video of the eleven webcam images that we captured. I'll give him class time to work on it this afternoon." Stay tuned!


Sept. 2009 Aurora Gallery
[previous Septembers: 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 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 October 22, 2009 there were 1076 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Oct. 2009 Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Mag.
Size
2001 CV26
Oct. 8
9.8 LD
13
2.2 km
2009 TJ
Oct. 13
10.8 LD
18
130 m
2009 TM8
Oct. 17
0.9 LD
17
10 m
2009 TF8
Oct. 17
7.6 LD
19
20 m
2009 TH8
Oct. 19
4.5 LD
18
45 m
2009 UE
Oct. 19
2.5 LD
19
40 m
2009 UD
Oct. 20
2.0 LD
17
17 m
1999 AP10
Oct. 20
29.7 LD
13
2.7 km
2009 TO8
Oct. 21
7.4 LD
19
27 m
2009 UJ
Oct. 22
6.8 LD
19
25 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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