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OLD SUNSPOT SET TO RETURN: The quieting of sunspot AR2205 has prompted NOAA forecasters to lower the odds of an X-class flare today to only 10%. However, they are raising the odds again tomorrow when old sunspot AR2192 is expected to return from its two-week trip around the farside of the sun. In late October, AR2192 unleashed six intense X-flares. If it still possesses any of its former vigor, the old sunspot could bring a sharp uptick in solar activity. NOAA estimates a 30% chance of X-flares on Nov. 12-13. Solar flare alerts: text, voice
HISTORIC COMET LANDING TOMORROW: The European Space Agency is about to make history: On Nov. 12th, it is going to land on a comet. The action begins Wednesday at 08:35 UT when ESA's Rosetta spacecraft drops a probe named "Philae" onto the core of Comet 67P. This video shows what happens next:
In the past, nations of Earth have landed on planets, moons, and asteroids, but never before on a comet. This is an important and daring first. "A comet is unlike any other planetary body that we've attempted to land on," says Claudia Alexander of the US Rosetta Project at JPL. "Getting Philae down successfully will be an incredible achievement for humankind."
"How hard is this landing?" asks Art Chmielewski, the US Rosetta Project Manager. "Consider this: The comet will be moving 40 times faster than a speeding bullet, spinning, shooting out gas and welcoming Rosetta on the surface with boulders, cracks, scarps and possibly meters of dust!"
Philae will take 7 hours to fall 22.5 km from the spacecraft to the comet--an interval some mission scientists are calling "The Seven Hours of Terror." Confirmation of the landing will reach ground stations on Wednesday at approximately 1600 UT. You can follow the descent as it happens by tuning in to ESA's #CometLanding webcast.
Realtime Comet Photo Gallery
GENTLE IMPACT PRODUCES MINOR GEOMAGNETIC STORM: A CME sideswiped Earth's magnetic field on Nov. 10th. The impact was weak, yet nevertheless sparked a G1-class geomagnetic storm and auroras around the poles. Marketa S. Murray sends this picture from outside Fairbanks, Alaska:
"We some 'Alaska rain' in Fairbanks this morning," says Murray. "Beautiful!"
The CME that sparked the display traveled to Earth at about 600 km/s. As CMEs go, that is slow. Because the storm cloud was relatively plodding, it did not develop a shock wave at its leading edge--hence the weak impact and minor storm.
Geomagnetic unrest should continue around the poles for the next 24 hours as CME effects subside. Arctic sky watchers, remain alert for auroras. Aurora alerts: text, voice
Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery
Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery
Realtime Eclipse Photo Gallery
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 Nov. 11, 2014, the network reported 66 fireballs.
(53 sporadics, 10 Northern Taurids, 2 omicron Eridanids, 1 chi Taurid)
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]
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 November 11, 2014 there were 1511 potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters: 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.
|Asteroid || |
|2014 UD192 || |
|2004 JN13 || |
|1998 SS49 || |
|2005 UH3 || |
|2007 EJ || |
|1991 VE || |
| ||The official U.S. government space weather bureau |
| ||The first place to look for information about sundogs, pillars, rainbows and related phenomena. |
| ||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 |
| ||Realtime and archival images of the Sun from SOHO. |
| ||from the NOAA Space Environment Center |
| ||the underlying science of space weather |