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Solar wind
speed: 547.7 km/sec
density: 2.5 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2346 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C3
1712 UT Nov16
24-hr: M1
0749 UT Nov16
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 16 Nov 13
Sprawling sunspot AR1897 has a 'beta-gamma-delta' magnetic field that harbors energy for X-class solar flares. . Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 272
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 16 Nov 2013

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2013 total: 0 days (0%)
2012 total: 0 days (0%)
2011 total: 2 days (<1%)
2010 total: 51 days (14%)
2009 total: 260 days (71%)
Since 2004: 821 days
Typical Solar Min: 486 days

Update
16 Nov 2013

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 178 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 16 Nov 2013

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 1 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 3
quiet
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 5.5 nT
Bz: 1.8 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
Coronal Holes: 16 Nov 13
Solar wind flowing from the indicated coronal hole could reach Earth on Nov. 17-18. Credit: SDO/AIA.

Spaceweather.com is now posting daily satellite images of noctilucent clouds (NLCs), which hover over Earth's poles at the edge of space. The data come from NASA's AIM spacecraft. The north polar "daisy" pictured below is a composite of near-realtime images from AIM assembled by researchers at the University of Colorado's Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP).
Noctilucent Clouds
Switch view: Europe, USA, Asia, Polar
Updated at: 09-02-2013 11:55:02
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2013 Nov 16 2200 UTC
FLARE
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
CLASS M
60 %
60 %
CLASS X
15 %
15 %
Geomagnetic Storms:
Probabilities for significant disturbances in Earth's magnetic field are given for three activity levels: active, minor storm, severe storm
Updated at: 2013 Nov 16 2200 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
20 %
15 %
MINOR
05 %
05 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
20 %
MINOR
25 %
25 %
SEVERE
30 %
20 %
 
Saturday, Nov. 16, 2013
What's up in space
 

Listen to radar echoes from satellites and meteors, live on listener-supported Space Weather Radio.

 
Spaceweather Radio is on the air

RARE DOUBLE-COMET FLYBY OF MERCURY: NASA's MESSENGER spacecraft is about to get a close-up view of Comet ISON's outburst. On Nov. 18-19 Comet ISON and Comet Encke both will fly by Mercury, the planet MESSENGER is orbiting. You can learn more about this rare double-comet flyby and what MESSENGER might see in a video from Science@NASA.

SPRAWLING SUNSPOT, CHANCE OF FLARES: Sunspot AR1897 has evolved into a sprawling archipelago of magnetic islands with more than a dozen dark cores scattered across 350,000 km of solar "terrain." This complex region has a 'beta-gamma-delta' magnetic field that harbors energy for X-class solar flares, and it is directly facing Earth:

Any eruptions from AR1897 this weekend would likely be geoeffective. NOAA forecasters estimate a 60% chance of M-class solar flares and a 15% chance of X-flares on Nov. 16th. Solar flare alerts: text, voice

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery

COMET ISON UPDATE: Reports of naked-eye sightings of Comet ISON are coming in from around the world. Experienced observers put the comet's magntitude at +5.5 on Nov. 16th. This means it is now fully 10 times brighter than it was only three days ago before the outburst. To the naked eye, ISON appears as a faint smudge of pale green light low in the pre-dawn sky. The view through a telescope is more dramatic. The comet's tail has become a riotous crowd of gaseous streamers stretching more than 3.5 degrees across the sky. Amateur astronomer Waldemar Skorupa sends this picture from Kahler Asten, Germany:

The tail is so long, he couldn't fit the whole thing in the field of view. How long is it? Comet ISON's tail extends more than 8 million kilometers behind the comet's nucleus. For comparison, that's 21 times the distance between Earth and the Moon.

Because so much gas and dust is spewing from the comet's core, it is impossible to see clearly what caused Comet ISON's outburst on Nov. 13-14. One possibility is that fresh veins of ice are opening up in the comet's nucleus, vaporizing furiously as ISON approaches the sun. Another possibility is that the nucleus has completely fragmented.

"If so, it will still be several days before we know for sure," says Karl Battams, an astronomer with NASA's Comet ISON Observing Campaign. "When comet nuclei fall apart, it’s not like a shrapnel-laden explosion. Instead, the chunks slowly drift apart at slightly different speeds. Given that ISON’s nucleus is shrouded in such a tremendous volume of light-scattering dust and gas right now, it will be almost impossible to determine this for at least a few days and perhaps not until the comet reaches the field of view of NASA's STEREO HI-1A instrument on November 21, 2013. We will have to wait for the chunks to drift apart a sufficient distance, assuming they don't crumble first."

In short, no one knows for sure what is happening to Comet ISON. This could be the comet's death throes--or just the first of many brightening events the comet experiences as it plunges toward the sun for a close encounter on Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 28th).

Monitoring is encouraged. Comet ISON rises in the east just before the sun. Amateur astronomers, if you have a GOTO telescope, enter these coordinates. Dates of special interest include Nov. 17th and 18th when the comet will pass the bright star Spica, making ISON extra-easy to find. Sky maps: Nov. 15, 16, 17, 18, 19.

Realtime Comet ISON Photo Gallery
Ephemerides: Comet ISON, Comet Lovejoy, Comet Encke, Comet LINEAR X1


Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery


Realtime Comet ISON Photo Gallery

  All Sky Fireball Network
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 Nov. 16, 2013, the network reported 10 fireballs.
(7 sporadics, 2 Leonids, 1 Northern Taurid)

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]

  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 16, 2013 there were 1439 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Size
2011 JY1
Nov 14
6.7 LD
54 m
2001 AV43
Nov 18
3 LD
52 m
2013 VK13
Nov 19
8.1 LD
28 m
2010 CL19
Nov 25
37.6 LD
1.3 km
2013 NJ
Nov 26
2.5 LD
190 m
2011 YD29
Dec 28
6.1 LD
24 m
2007 SJ
Jan 21
18.9 LD
1.9 km
2012 BX34
Jan 28
9.6 LD
13 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 web 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 Dynamics Observatory
  Researchers call it a "Hubble for the sun." SDO is the most advanced solar observatory ever.
STEREO
  3D views of the sun from NASA's Solar and Terrestrial Relations Observatory
Solar and Heliospheric Observatory
  Realtime and archival images of the Sun from SOHO.
Daily Sunspot Summaries
  from the NOAA Space Environment Center
Heliophysics
  the underlying science of space weather
Space Weather Alerts
   
  more links...
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