The Sun Online and solar activity. February 20, 2014

Solar activity has been dominated by NOAA ARs 1982 and 1976. The latter, even though it decayed in past 24h, produced an M3.0 flare peaking at 07:56 UT, it is now rotating over the west limb. NOAA AR 1982, with beta-gamma configuration, has grown and developed, M-class flares are possible. The
M3.0 flare was associated with radio bursts, and a proton storm that increased the 10 MeV fluxes over the threshold of 10 protons/cm2-s-sr (at 09:00 UT) and reached a peak of 20 protons/cm2-s-sr 30 minutes later (at present is around 10 protons/cm2-s-sr). The fluxes of 50 and 100 MeV protons were also affected and peaked around 3 and 0.7 protons/cm2-s-sr respectively.Three halo CMEs occurred in past 24h. The first one, a full halo at 16:00 UT (LASCO-C2) on February 19, related to a filament eruption close to central meridian. The bulk of the material is heading south, but a glancing blow at the Earth can be expected on February 23 around 15:00 UT (using the measured speed of 430 km/s). The second one was related to a C3.3 flare from NOAA AR 1982 (peaking at 03:25 UT), first seen by LASCO-C2 at 03:12 UT . This CME will most likely arrive to the Earth. Arrival time  expected for February 22 around 16:00 UT, using the measured speed of 830 km/s. The third one occurred in relation with the M3.0 flare from NOAA AR 1976, due to the location of the source (W75), the bulk of the CME is travelling towards the west. Most likely only a shock will reach the Earth. The measured speed is 959 km/s and thus the expected arrival time is  February 22 at 09:00 UT. Due to the speeds, all three CMEs will most likely interact on its way to the Earth. A shock arrived to ACE at 02:58 UT, probably related to an early arrival of the halo CME from February 18. Kp has reached 6 from 03:00 to 12:00 UT due to a southward Bz of -10nT and solar wind speeds in the order of 700 km/s during several hours. More geomagnetic storm periods are expected as Bz is around -7 nT with speeds over 600 km/s.

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack
Date: 02/20/14
Time UT: 19:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

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