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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: 341.7 km/sec
density: 6.4 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2345 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C4
2035 UT Jan18
24-hr: C4
2035 UT Jan18
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2340 UT
Daily Sun: 18 Jan. 10
Disappearing sunspot 1040 is a member of new Solar Cycle 24. Image credit: SOHO/MDI
Sunspot number: 16
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 17 Jan 2010

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2010 total: 1 day (6%)
2009 total: 260 days (71%)
Since 2004: 772 days
Typical Solar Min: 485 days
explanation | more info
Updated 17 Jan 2010


The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 83 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 17 Jan 2010

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= 1 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 1
quiet
explanation | more data
Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 5.9 nT
Bz: 2.9 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
Coronal Holes:
A solar wind stream flowing from the indicated coronal hole should reach Earth on or about Jan. 19th. Credit: SOHO Extreme UV Telescope
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2010 Jan 18 2201 UTC
FLARE
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
CLASS M
10 %
10 %
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: 2010 Jan 18 2201 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
05 %
15 %
MINOR
01 %
01 %
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
January 18, 2010

SATELLITE FLYBYS APP: Turn your iPhone or iPod into a field-tested satellite tracker! Spaceweather.com presents the Satellite Flybys app.

 

MYSTERY OF THE GIANT RIBBON: Last year, when NASA's IBEX spacecraft discovered a giant ribbon at the edge of the solar system, researchers were mystified. They called it a "shocking result" and puzzled over its origin. Now the mystery may have been solved. Get the full story from Science@NASA.

SOLAR FLARE: Old sunspot 1039 still has some life left in it. Yesterday, Jan. 17th, it unleashed a strong solar flare and triggered a solar tsunami. Click on the image to set the scene in motion.

The eruption, which took place on the far side of the sun, was invisible from EarthNevertheless, NASA's STEREO-B spacecraft had a great view. STEREO-B is stationed over the sun's eastern limb where it can see things that we cannot. Solar rotation is slowly turning sunspot 1039 back toward our planet and STEREO-B will keep an eye on it as it approaches. Stay tuned for updates.

ARCTIC SUN DOG: Weeks ago, darkness fell around the Arctic circle, and people there are beginning to yearn for some sunshine. Claus Vogel of Baffin Island, Canada, couldn't wait any longer, so on Jan. 17th he went out hunting for the sun accompanied by his dog Hero. Scroll past this picture of Hero for his report:


Above: Hero basks in sunshine for the first time this year.

"At this time of year, the Arctic sun is so low on the horizon, the mountains block its view. So Hero and I climbed Mt Duval to feel its warm rays on our face for the first time in 2010. We trekked through knee-deep snow, scaled a mountainside, and endured temperatures of -35 oC. It was all worth it! The things we do to see the sun..."

Back down in town (Pangnirtung), notes Vogel, people won't feel direct sunlight until mid-February. He and Hero are already planning their next sun-hunt.

UPDATED: January Northern Lights Gallery
[previous Januarys: 2009, 2008, 2007, 2005, 2004, 2001]


Solar Eclipse Photo Gallery
[World Map of Eclipse Sightings]

       
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 January 18, 2010 there were 1092 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Jan. 2010 Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Mag.
Size
2010 AL2
Jan. 11
11.5 LD
20
23 m
24761 Ahau
Jan. 11
70.8 LD
16
1.4 km
2000 YH66
Jan. 12
69.5 LD
17
1.1 km
2010 AL30
Jan. 13
0.3 LD
14
18 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...
   
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