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Solar wind
speed: 564.5 km/sec
density: 1.4 protons/cm3
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2350 UT
X-ray Solar Flares
6-hr max: C4
1753 UT May14
24-hr: C4
1753 UT May14
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at: 2300 UT
Daily Sun: 14 May 15
Sunspot AR2339 has a 'beta-gamma' magnetic field that harbors energy for M-class solar flares. Credit: SDO/HMI

Sunspot number: 135
What is the sunspot number?
Updated 14 May 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 14 May 2015

The Radio Sun
10.7 cm flux: 157 sfu
explanation | more data
Updated 14 May 2015

Current Auroral Oval:
Switch to: Europe, USA, New Zealand, Antarctica
Credit: NOAA/Ovation
Planetary K-index
Now: Kp= 2 quiet
24-hr max: Kp= 3
explanation | more data
Interplanetary Mag. Field
Btotal: 4.4 nT
Bz: 0.2 nT north
explanation | more data
Updated: Today at 2349 UT
Coronal Holes: 14 May 15

A stream of solar wind flowing from the indicated coronal hole should reach Earth on May 18-19. Credit: SDO/AIA.
Noctilucent Clouds The northern season for NLCs is about to begin. Readers should monitor the "daily daisies" below for first sightings from NASA's AIM spacecraft.
Switch view: Europe, USA, Asia, Polar
Updated at: 05-14-2015 00:55:03
NOAA Forecasts
Updated at: 2015 May 14 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
20 %
20 %
05 %
05 %
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 May 14 2200 UTC
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
30 %
25 %
10 %
10 %
01 %
01 %
High latitudes
0-24 hr
24-48 hr
15 %
15 %
25 %
25 %
40 %
35 %
Thursday, May. 14, 2015
What's up in space

Come to Tromsø and share Marianne's passion for rural photography: invites you to experience "Heaven on Earth" with an aurora, fjord, fishing, whale watching, photography or sightseeing tour.

Chase the Light Tours

ASTEROID NON-STORY: Many readers are asking, Why is not covering today's near-miss of Earth by asteroid 1999 FN53? Answer: There is no near-miss. Asteroid 1999 FN53 is indeed flying past the Earth-moon system on May 14th, but the distance is 10 million kilometers. A collision is absolutely impossible, and it's not even close. News reports to the contrary are over-hyped.

THE 'WOW' PROMINENCE: Around the world, amateur astronomers are monitoring a magnificent structure on the sun. "I looked through my solar scope this morning, and this prominence made me catch myself saying, WOW!" reports John Nassr of Baguio, the Philippines. This is what he saw:

It's called a "hedgerow prominence." Hot glowing plasma inside the structure is held aloft by unstable solar magnetic fields. Space telescopes have taken high resolution images of similar prominences and seen amazing things: (1) tadpole-shaped plumes that float up from the base of the prominence; (2) narrow streams of plasma that descend from the top like waterfalls; and (3) swirls and vortices that resemble van Gogh's Starry Night. Got a solar telescope? Take a look!

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery

MIDNIGHT SUN VS. NORTHERN LIGHTS: A high-speed solar wind stream is sparking geomagnetic storms around the poles. As a result, sky watchers who had given up hope of seeing auroras during the bright nights of northern summer are suddenly ... seeing them.

"Apparently the aurora-chasing season isn't quite over yet," reports Colin Tyler Bogucki of Eagle River, Alaska. "We had a nice display around 1:00-1:30 this morning outside the Eagle River Nature Center." It was visible over the glow of the Midnight Sun:

"The window of viewing opportunity is narrow right now, with only a few hours of semi-dark skies," says Bogucki. "I was wading in Eagle River here, shooting straight down the valley to the northwest. As you can see, the twilight is still glowing well after sunset."

"In just a matter of days," he adds, "the night sky will be too bright to auroras again until late summer." Famous last words? NOAA forecasters estimate a 50% chance of geomagnetic storms on May 14th as the solar wind continues to blow. Aurora alerts: text, voice

Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery

SPACE STATION TRANSIT: On May 12th, the sunspot number increased--but only for a split-second--when a winged silhouette flew across the solar disk. Levin Dieterle of Reutin (Alpirsbach), Germany, captured the the transit:

It was the International Space Station. "I took the pictures using a Canon EOS 5D MKIII digital camera looking through a 6-inch refracting telescope--solar filtered, of course!" says Dieterle. Calsky provided the transit prediction.

So far this week, space station transits have been the chief form of activity on the quiet sun. No significant solar flares have been observed despite the fact that behemoth sunspot AR2339, shown above alongside the ISS, has an unstable 'beta-gamma' magnetic field. The sunspot may yet produce its own contribution: NOAA forecasters estimate a 30% chance of M-flares and a 5% chance of X-flares on May 14th. Solar flare alerts: text, voice

Realtime Space Weather Photo Gallery

Realtime Comet 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 May. 14, 2015, the network reported 7 fireballs.
(5 sporadics, 1 eta Lyrid, 1 eta Aquariid)

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 14, 2015 there were potentially hazardous asteroids.
Recent & Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
Miss Distance
2015 JC1
May 8
3.5 LD
17 m
2015 JD
May 10
3.6 LD
35 m
2015 JR
May 13
4 LD
24 m
2015 HB177
May 14
12.4 LD
51 m
2015 JF1
May 15
0.8 LD
10 m
2006 HX30
May 16
10.9 LD
26 m
5381 Sekhmet
May 17
62.8 LD
2.1 km
2015 JF
May 18
9 LD
24 m
2015 HT9
May 25
12.2 LD
24 m
2005 XL80
Jun 4
38.1 LD
1.0 km
2012 XB112
Jun 11
10.1 LD
2 m
2005 VN5
Jul 7
12.6 LD
18 m
2015 HM10
Jul 7
1.1 LD
68 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
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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