You are viewing the page for Mar. 6, 2008
  Select another date:
<<back forward>> -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids
Current conditions
Solar wind
speed: 390.2 km/sec
density: 2.8 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2245 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: A0
1755 UT Mar06
24-hr: A1
1235 UT Mar06
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2245 UT
Daily Sun: 06 Mar 08
A new sunspot (denoted '?') is forming near the sun's western limb. Credit: SOHO/MDI
Sunspot number: 13
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 06 Mar 2008
Far side of the Sun:
This holographic image reveals no large sunspots on the far side of the sun. Image credit: SOHO/MDI
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 0 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 2
explanation | more data
Current Auroral Oval:

Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
What is the auroral oval?
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 3.7 nT
Bz: 2.7 nT south
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2246 UT
Coronal Holes:
A solar wind stream flowing from the indicated coronal hole will hit Earth's magnetic field on or about March 7th. Credit:SOHO Extreme UV Telescope
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2008 Mar 06 2203 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
01 %
01 %
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: 2008 Mar 06 2203 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
20 %
40 %
05 %
20 %
01 %
10 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
25 %
50 %
10 %
25 %
05 %
15 %

What's up in Space
March 6, 2008
Where's Saturn? Is that a UFO--or the ISS? What's the name of that star? Get the answers from mySKY--a fun new astronomy helper from Meade.   mySKY

AURORAS IN BROAD DAYLIGHT: Imagine living on a planet where Northern Lights fill the heavens at all hours of the day. Around the clock, even in broad daylight, luminous curtains shimmer and ripple across the sky. News flash--Astronomers have discovered such a planet. Its name is Earth: full story.

HEAVENLY MEETING: High overhead after sunset, a heavenly meeting is underway. Attendees are Comet 17/P Holmes and the California Nebula (NGC 1499):

"Wow, what a lovely pair," says photographer P-M Hedén of Vallentuna, Sweden. "This is a tuly unique event." To capture the giant comet (1o in diameter) and the even bigger nebula (more than 2o long) in a single frame, he used a wide-field WIlliam Optics WO66 APO telescope and a Canon Digtial Rebel XT. The convention is set to continue for many nights to come, making this a good week for astrophotography: sky map, ephemeris.

more images: from Michael Jäger of Stixendorf, Austria; from Mike Holloway of Van Buren, Arkansas;

SHADOW PLAY: Which is higher, the contrail or the sun halo? Examine this picture, then scroll down for the answer:

Photo details: Canon EOS 30D, EF-S 10-22mm

The contrail is higher. You can tell because it casts its shadow on the halo below.

"Here in Reykjavik, Iceland, sun halos have appeared frequently over the past few weeks," says photographer Fredrik Holm. With the contrail shadow adding depth, "this one was by far the most dramatic I observed."

Splitting halos: It is not strictly correct to say that "a shadow falls across the sun halo" because sun halos have no physical substance. (Just try to touch one!) The tangible thing that is shadowed is ice: Sun halos are formed by ice crystals floating in cirrus clouds. A gap in the halo is a sign that crystals are being deprived of sunlight from above.

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. [comment]
On March 6, 2008 there were 938 potentially hazardous asteroids.
March 2008 Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2008 DH5
Mar. 5
7.1 LD
60 m
1620 Geographos
Mar. 17
49 LD
3 km
2003 FY6
Mar. 21
6.3 LD
145 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 bureau for real-time monitoring of solar and geophysical events, research in solar-terrestrial physics, and forecasting solar and geophysical disturbances.
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.
Daily Sunspot Summaries
  From the NOAA Space Environment Center
Current Solar Images
  from the National Solar Data Analysis Center
  more links...
©2008, -- This site is penned daily by Dr. Tony Phillips.
©2019 All rights reserved.