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Solar wind
speed: 270.7 km/sec
density: 2.8 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2351 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C3
1734 UT Jun05
24-hr: C3
1734 UT Jun05
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2259 UT
Daily Sun: 05 Jun 15
Sunspot AR2361 poses a threat for M-class solar flares. Credit: SDO/HMI

Sunspot number: 80
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 05 Jun 2015

Spotless Days
Current Stretch: 0 days
2015 total: 0 days (0%)

2014 total: 1 day (<1%)
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%)

Updated 05 Jun 2015

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 118 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 05 Jun 2015

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/Ovation
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 1 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 1
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 5.8 nT
Bz: 0.3 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2350 UT
Coronal Holes: 05 Jun 15

Solar wind flowing from this minor coronal hole could reach Earth on June 9-10. Credit: SDO/AIA.
Noctilucent Clouds The northern season for NLCs is underway. NASA's AIM spacecraft spotted the first noctilucent clouds over the Arctic Circle on May 19th.
Switch view: Europe, USA, Asia, Polar
Updated at: 06-04-2015 15:55:03
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2015 Jun 05 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
20 %
20 %
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: 2015 Jun 05 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
15 %
25 %
05 %
05 %
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
20 %
15 %
25 %
30 %
20 %
30 %
Friday, Jun. 5, 2015
What's up in space

Learn to photograph Northern Lights like a pro. Sign up for Peter Rosen's Aurora Photo Courses in Abisko National Park, winner of the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence Award 2015.

Lapland tours

INCREASING CHANCE OF FLARES: Prompted by the emergence of two new sunspots, NOAA forecasters have boosted the odds of an M-class flare today to 20%. The most likely source of an eruption is AR2361 near the sun's northeastern limb. Solar flare alerts: text, voice

NOCTILUCENT CLOUDS HOP THE ATLANTIC: In 2015, the first reports of noctilucent clouds (NLCs) came from Europe. Now the clouds have hopped the Atlantic, and Canadians are seeing them, too. "Despite the full Moon in the opposite part of the sky, the NLC display was quite noticeable," reports Alister Ling, who sends this picture from Edmonton, Alberta:

"To confirm it was not moonlit cirrus, I examined the clouds through binoculars," says Ling. "The classic waves and bands of NLCs are just gorgeous in binoculars."

NLCs are Earth's highest clouds. Seeded by meteoroids, they float at the edge of space more than 80 km above the planet's surface. The clouds are very cold and filled with tiny ice crystals. When sunbeams hit those crystals, they glow electric-blue.

Noctilucent clouds first appeared in the 19th century after the eruption of super-volcano Krakatoa. At the time, people thought NLCs were caused by the eruption, but long after Krakatoa's ash settled, the clouds remained. In recent years, NLCs have intensified and spread with summer sightings as far south as Utah and Colorado. This could be a sign of increasing greenhouse gases in Earth's atmosphere.

Observing tips: Look west 30 to 60 minutes after sunset when the Sun has dipped 6o to 16o below the horizon. If you see luminous blue-white tendrils spreading across the sky, you may have spotted a noctilucent cloud.

Realtime NLC Photo Gallery

DAYLIGHT METEOR SHOWER: On June 4th, the Canadian Meteor Orbit Radar (CMOR) detected a surge in meteor activity. "CMOR has begun to see the ramp up of the Daytime Arietid shower," reports Peter Brown of the University of Western Ontario. The pink "hot spot" in this CMOR sky map shows how the radar echoes are clustered in the constellation Aries--not far from the glaring sun:

"The Arietids are the fifth strongest shower of the year detected by CMOR," says Brown. "They are likely related to a complex of debris streams produced during the breakup of a large comet several millennia ago."

Ironically, most people never notice this relatively intense shower. The reason: It peaks in broad daylight. Compared to the human eye, radars do a much better job detecting meteors through the glare.

"Visual observers may be able to see a handful of Arietids in the hour or so before sunrise over the next week when the shower is at its peak," notes Brown. "These will all be  'Earthgrazers'--that is, meteors which enter at shallow (<10o) angles and streak across very long arcs in the sky. This peculiar visibility is a result of the radiant never getting much above the horizon at northern latitudes before the rising sun washes out the show."

"The shower is unique among CMOR streams in that it has a very broad peak lasting almost five days," adds Brown. "The best time to watch will be any day during the early morning hours of June 6 – June 12."

Extra: Listen to the Arietids on Space Weather Radio!

Realtime Meteor Photo Gallery

SPACE STATION MARATHON: The annual "space station marathon" is underway. For the next few weeks, the ISS will be almost continuously lit by summer sunlight when it passes over our planet's northern hemisphere. Sky watchers can see the space station gliding among the stars as often as four times every night. On June 3rd, Philip Smith photographed one of several flybys over his backyard in Manorville, New York:

"It was very cloudy during the flyby," he says,"but using my telescope I was able to catch the ISS through a small gap in the clouds almost directly overhead."

To the unaided eye the ISS looks like a bright slow-moving star, often rivaling Jupiter or Venus in luminosity. Small telescopes trained on the spaceship reveal its sprawling solar arrays, labs and living quarters, and retinue of docked supply ships. Smith sharpened these details by aligning and "stacking" multiple video frames. "In this screenshot, I share a part of how I processed this stacked image using RegiStax 5."

Ready to see the ISS for yourself? There are plenty of chances as summer nears. Find out when to look using's Simple Satellite Tracker.

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery

Realtime Sprite Photo Gallery

Realtime Aurora 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

On Jun. 5, 2015, the network reported 3 fireballs.
(3 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 June 5, 2015 there were potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2015 KQ120
May 31
8.5 LD
20 m
2015 KM57
Jun 3
6.6 LD
35 m
2005 XL80
Jun 4
38.1 LD
1.0 km
2015 KA122
Jun 6
3.3 LD
95 m
2015 KU121
Jun 7
7.5 LD
116 m
2012 XB112
Jun 11
10.1 LD
2 m
2015 KK57
Jun 23
8.3 LD
13 m
2005 VN5
Jul 7
12.6 LD
18 m
2015 HM10
Jul 7
1.1 LD
73 m
1994 AW1
Jul 15
25.3 LD
1.4 km
2011 UW158
Jul 19
6.4 LD
565 m
2013 BQ18
Jul 20
7.9 LD
38 m
1999 JD6
Jul 25
18.8 LD
1.6 km
2005 NZ6
Aug 6
76.5 LD
1.4 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.
  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
  the underlying science of space weather
Columbia Northern High School
  Web-based high school science course with free enrollment
  more links...
©2015 All rights reserved. This site is penned daily by Dr. Tony Phillips.
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