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Solar wind
speed: 330.7 km/sec
density: 3.2 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: B5
2120 UT May29
24-hr: C1
0430 UT May29
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 29 May 14
None of these sunspots pose a threat for strong solar flares. Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 72
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 29 May 2014

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2014 total: 0 days (0%)
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%)

Update
29 May 2014

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 99 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 29 May 2014

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/POES
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 2 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 3
quiet
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 5.9 nT
Bz: 2.9 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
Coronal Holes: 29 May 14
There are no large coronal holes on the Earthside of the sun. Credit: SDO/AIA.

Spaceweather.com posts 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: 05-29-2014 12:55:03
SPACE WEATHER
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2014 May 29 2200 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: 2014 May 29 2200 UTC
Mid-latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
05 %
05 %
MINOR
01 %
01 %
SEVERE
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
ACTIVE
15 %
15 %
MINOR
15 %
15 %
SEVERE
05 %
05 %
 
Thursday, May. 29, 2014
What's up in space
 

Did you miss the lunar eclipse? No problem. The Coca-Cola Science Center recorded it for you. Click here to play the movie.

 
2014 Lunar Eclipse Live

QUIET SUN: Solar activity remains low. Not one of the sunspots scattered across the visible disk of the sun possesses the kind of complex magnetic field that poses a threat for strong eruptions. NOAA forecasters estimate a scant 5% chance of M-flares on May 29th. Solar flare alerts: text, voice

COMET 209P/LINEAR FLIES BY EARTH: Today, Comet 209P/LINEAR is passing remarkably close to Earth. At a distance of only 5 million miles (0.0554 AU), it is making the 9th closest comet flyby in recorded history. Such an encounter should be good news for sky watchers. Just one problem: the comet is not only remarkably close, but also remarkably dim. Observing from Australia, Nirmal Paul needed a half-meter telescope to take this picture of the comet approaching on May 28th:

Despite its proximity to Earth, the comet is shining like a 10th or 11th magnitude star--that is, about 100 times too dim to see with the unaided eye. The comet is not very active and it currently produces very little dust. This will come as no surprise to anyone who watched the May Camelopardalid meteor shower on May 24th. Caused by dust from Comet 209P/LINEAR, the shower was a visual dud.

Amateur astronomers who wish to watch this stealthy comet pass by Earth should consult the detailed finder charts provided by Sky and Telescope. And check the comet gallery for updates:

Realtime Comet Photo Gallery

CLOUDTOP PHENOMENON: For years, researchers have been studying red sprites and blue jets--strange forms of lightning that come out of the tops of clouds. On May 27th, a new form appeared. Pilot Cherdphong Visarathanonth was in the cockpit of an A320 at the airport in Bangkok, Thailand, when he saw a white tornado-like beam dancing atop this cumulonimbus cloud:

"We could see the same phenomenon through both windshields even after the aircraft has pushing back in a different direction," says Visarathanonth. "I made a 4 minute video in which we can see the phenomenon quickly moving and disappearing from time to time."

Brian Whittaker, another pilot with extensive sky watching experience, says, "I have seen Blue Jets and Sprites, but this is something totally different. Good luck figuring out what it is."

One reader suggests that it is a "jumping sundog." Lightning discharges in thunderclouds can temporarily change the electric field above the clouds where charged ice crystals were reflecting sunlight. The new electric field quickly re-orients the geometric crystals to a new orientation that reflects sunlight differently. Videos of the phenomenon show that it might be related to what Visarathanonth saw.

Other ideas are welcomed. If you have one, post it in the comments section of Visarathanonth's Space Weather Gallery page.

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery


Realtime Meteor Photo Gallery


Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery


Realtime Mars 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 May. 29, 2014, the network reported 6 fireballs.
( 6 sporadics)

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 May 29, 2014 there were potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Asteroid
Date(UT)
Miss Distance
Size
2014 KC45
May 28
0.2 LD
6 m
2014 KF22
May 28
2.7 LD
22 m
2014 KF46
May 29
1.6 LD
22 m
2014 KH39
Jun 3
1.1 LD
27 m
2014 HQ124
Jun 8
3.3 LD
650 m
2011 PU1
Jul 18
7.6 LD
43 m
2002 JN97
Aug 2
61.4 LD
2.0 km
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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