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<<back forward>> -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
Current conditions
Solar wind
speed: 331.0 km/sec
density: 0.5 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2345 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: A0
2335 UT Nov27
24-hr: A0
2335 UT Nov27
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2340 UT
Daily Sun: 27 Nov. 09
The sun is blank--no sunspots. Credit: SOHO/MDI
Sunspot number: 0
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 26 Nov 2009

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 4 day
2009 total: 247 days (75%)
Since 2004: 758 days
Typical Solar Min: 485 days
explanation | more info
Updated 26 Nov 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= 0 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 1
explanation | more data
Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 1.8 nT
Bz: 1.6 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2346 UT
Coronal Holes:
There are no large coronal holes on the Earth-facing side of the sun. Credit: SOHO Extreme UV Telescope
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2009 Nov 27 2201 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
01 %
01 %
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 Nov 27 2201 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
05 %
05 %
01 %
01 %
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
05 %
05 %
01 %
01 %
01 %
01 %
What's up in Space
November 27, 2009

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


ATLANTIS RETURNS TO EARTH: Space shuttle Atlantis landed at Kennedy Space Center this morning at 9:44 am EST. The STS-129 mission that included three spacewalks and more than six days at the International Space Station has been completed.

THANKSGIVING SKY SHOW: "What a great way to celebrate Thanksgiving!" says Mark Marquette of Boones Creek, Tennessee. "Last night after turkey dinner, my daughter Jesse and I went outside and watched a bright double flyby of the space shuttle Atlantis and the International Space Station. I photographed Jessie enjoying the show through binoculars."

Mark and Jessie have reason to be thankful. Like thousands of others around the USA, they witnessed one of the last double flybys of the shuttle and space station. In 2010, NASA plans to retire the space shuttle. With only five shuttle missions left, this particular sky show is going to become increasingly rare. Stay tuned to the Simple Satellite Tracker for viewing times.

more images: from Tom Warner of Rapid City, SD; from Doug Zubenel of De Soto, KS; from Dr. Wayne Wooten of Pensacola, Florida; from Max Bittle of Suncook, NH; from Pete Lardizabal of St Johns, Florida; from Chris of Monroe, LA; from Thomas Faber of Marietta, GA; from Gary Weston of Cyprus; from Rich Schottler of Loveland, CO; from Sinan Cate of Ortaca, Mu─čla, Turkey; from Chuck Yeager of Athens, AL;

NORTHERN LIGHTS: This is a good week to be around the Arctic Circle. "Last night (Nov. 25), the skies over the Pangnirtung Fjord were once again filled with dancing lights," reports Claus Vogel from Baffin Island in northern Canada. "We've had dazzling auroras all week." He took this picture using a Nikon D700:

"The half moon provides ideal lighting conditions for photographing Northern Lights. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for more in the days ahead," he says.

He may get his wish. The solar wind stream that fueled last night's display is still buffeting Earth's magnetic field. Polar sky watchers should remain alert for auroras.

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

2009 Leonid Meteor Gallery
[previous Leonids: 1998, 2001, 2002, 2006]

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 November 27, 2009 there were 1084 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Nov. 2009 Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2009 UK14
Nov. 1
9.1 LD
29 m
2006 JY26
Nov. 2
6.7 LD
10 m
2000 XK44
Nov. 4
28.8 LD
1.1 km
2009 VA
Nov. 6
0.05 LD
6 m
2000 UJ1
Nov. 7
43.3 LD
1.2 km
2009 VT1
Nov. 9
1.4 LD
6 m
2000 TO64
Nov. 10
44.2 LD
1.9 km
2009 UK20
Nov. 12
6.5 LD
20 m
2009 VX
Nov. 12
2.6 LD
26 m
2009 VR
Nov. 13
6.6 LD
10 m
2009 WQ6
Nov. 16
0.9 LD
7 m
2009 WX7
Nov. 16
3.7 LD
20 m
2009 VC1
Nov. 18
6.0 LD
21 m
2009 WJ6
Nov. 20
0.5 LD
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.
  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, -- This site is penned daily by Dr. Tony Phillips.













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