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Solar wind
speed: 447.6 km/sec
density: 5.5 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2346 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C2
2223 UT Feb07
24-hr: M2
0456 UT Feb07
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 07 Feb 14
Growing sunspot AR1968 has developed a 'beta-gamma-delta' magnetic field that harbors energy for X-class solar flares. Credit: SDO/HMI
Sunspot number: 223
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 07 Feb 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%)

07 Feb 2014

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 191 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 07 Feb 2014

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 3 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 3
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 11.9 nT
Bz: 9.6 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2347 UT
Coronal Holes: 07 Feb 14
A solar wind stream flowing from the indicated coronal hole should reach Earth on Feb. 8-10. Credit: SDO/AIA. 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: 02-06-2014 13:55:02
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2014 Feb 07 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
60 %
60 %
20 %
20 %
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 Feb 07 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
35 %
35 %
25 %
15 %
05 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
10 %
15 %
25 %
30 %
60 %
45 %
Friday, Feb. 7, 2014
What's up in space

When is the best time to see auroras? Where is the best place to go? And how do you photograph them? These questions and more are answered in a new book, Northern Lights - a Guide, by Pal Brekke & Fredrik Broms.

Northern Lights - a Guide

CME IMPACT: A minor CME hit Earth's magnetic field today at aproximately 1700 UTC (noon EST). The impact caused electrical currents to ripple through the soil in parts of Scandinavia. High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras in the hours ahead. Aurora alerts: text, voice

BIG SUNSPOTS: All week long, big sunspot AR1967 has has been crackling with activity, seemingly on the edge of producing an X-class solar flare. That hasn't happened. However, a new sunspot growing alongside AR1967 could push things over the edge. Emerging active region AR1968 has an unstable 'beta-gamma-delta' magnetic field that harbors energy for strong explosions. NOAA forecasters estimate an 60% chance of M-class solar flares and a 20% chance of X-class solar flares on Feb. 7th. Solar flare alerts: text, voice

Last night in Key West, Florida, Scott Wilson looked out over the Gulf of Mexico and saw the two big sunspots melting into the sea:

The strange shape of the sun in Wilson's picture is a mirage caused by refraction in warm air just above the sea surface. There are many types of sunset mirages. This one is called the "Omega Sun" because the sun resembles the Greek letter omega.

Browse the gallery for more sunspot sunsets:

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery

CURIOSITY PHOTOGRAPHS EARTH: Last year when the Cassini spacecraft photographed Earth through the rings of Saturn, the whole world was alerted to smile and wave. Last week, Curiosity did the same thing with less fanfare. Except for a few scientists, no one knew the Mars rover would be taking this picture of the Earth-Moon system on Jan. 31st:

Mission controllers used the left eye of Curiosity's Mast Camera (Mastcam) to capture the scene about 80 minutes after local sunset in the Dingo Gap. Our planet was the brightest thing in the darkening Martian sky. A human observer with normal vision, if standing on Mars, would have easily seen Earth and the Moon as two distinct "evening stars." The distance to Earth when Curiosity took the photo was about 99 million miles. For more information about Curiosity's adventures on Mars, visit

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery

UNDER THE AURORAL OVAL: There is a place on Earth where you can see auroras almost every clear night even when there is no geomagnetic storm. It is under the auroral oval. The auroral oval is a donut of light around the poles which never goes completely dark because it is excited by energetic particles raining down from Earth's magnetosphere. Feb. 3rd was a very good night to be under the oval:

"What an amazing night this was!" says Alan Dyer of Churchill, Manitoba, Canada. "On the night of Feb 3-4, despite all indicators showing quiet levels of activity, the sky exploded with a stunning all-sky display of rippling curtains across the sky. Churchill is under the prime auroral oval, so we see Northern Lights almost every clear night, even when official indicators are reading low or no geomagnetic storms."

"These images are from the Churchill Northern Studies Centre, a non-profit research institute for Arctic science and that also offers aurora-watching and other Arctic tours through the year, including polar bear viewing in the autumn," he continues. "No words can describe the view of rapidly waving curtains of light rippling from horizon to horizon. All the tour group members left satisfied they had seen the celestial experience of a lifetime."

According to NOAA forecasters there is only a 5% chance of geomagnetic storms on Feb. 6th. That's more than enough, however, under the oval. Aurora alerts: text, voice

Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery

Realtime Supernova 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 Feb. 5, 2014, the network reported 2 fireballs.
(2 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]

On Feb. 4, 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 February 7, 2014 there were potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2014 BX43
Feb 2
9 LD
30 m
2014 BM62
Feb 2
3.2 LD
38 m
2014 BW32
Feb 3
1.9 LD
23 m
2014 BP43
Feb 8
5.5 LD
22 m
2006 DP14
Feb 10
6.2 LD
730 m
2014 BT43
Feb 11
9.8 LD
31 m
2000 EM26
Feb 18
8.8 LD
195 m
2014 BR57
Feb 20
4.4 LD
68 m
2000 EE14
Mar 6
64.6 LD
1.8 km
2003 QQ47
Mar 26
49.9 LD
1.4 km
1995 SA
Apr 2
73.1 LD
1.6 km
2000 HD24
Apr 4
42.2 LD
1.3 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
Space Weather Alerts
  more links...
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