Ten sunspot groups were reported by NOAA today. Two of them (NOAA ARs 2036 and 2037) have beta-gamma configuration of the photospheric magnetic field (although the NOAA AR 2037 is strongly decaying), and NOAA AR 2035 has beta-gamma-delta. Since yesterday’s M-flare, only weak C-class flares were detected, the strongest one being the C2.1 flare peaking at 03:26 UT today in a tiny sunspot group at S19E66 that seems to start emerging. A number of C-class flares was also observed in the sunspot group that just appeared from behind the south-east solar limb (returning NOAA AR 2021). We expect further flaring activity on the C-level, with a good chance for another M-class event. The proton event produced by the halo CME of April 18 is still going on. The solar wind speed is currently around 500 km/s and the interplanetary magnetic field magnitude is around 7-8 nT. The north-south IMF component Bz fluctuates between positive and negative values, so the geomagnetic situation remains mostly quiet, with only occasional intervals of K = 4 reported by Dourbes, IZMIRAN and NOAA. The geomagnetic conditions will probably be quiet to unsettled until April 21, when we expect the arrival of the ICME (or the shock driven by it) corresponding to the halo CME observed on April 18. A geomagnetic storm (with K index probably up to 6) may result.
Equipment: Coronado 90 + Imaging Source DMK + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Time UT: 15:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.
With SPONLI Space is getting closer
Illustration Credit: NASA Ames / SETI Institute / JPL-Caltech, Discovery: Elisa V. Quintana, et al.
Planet Kepler-186f is the first known Earth-size planet to lie within the habitable zone of a star beyond the Sun. Discovered using data from the prolific planet-hunting Kepler spacecraft, the distant world orbits its parent star, a cool, dim, M dwarf star about half the size and mass of the Sun, some 500 light-years away in the constellation Cygnus. M dwarfs are common, making up about 70 percent of the stars in our Milky Way galaxy. To be within the habitable zone, where surface temperatures allowing liquid water are possible, Kepler-186f orbits close, within 53 million kilometers (about the Mercury-Sun distance) of the M dwarf star, once every 130 days. Four other planets are known in the distant system. All four are only a little larger than Earth and in much closer orbits, also illustrated in the tantalizing artist’s vision. While the size and orbit of Kepler-186f are known, its mass and composition are not, and can’t be determined by Kepler’s transit technique. Still, models suggest that it could be rocky and have an atmosphere, making it potentially the most Earth-like exoplanet discovered so far.
NASA APOD 19-Apr-14
Omega Centauri (ω Cen) or NGC 5139, is a globular cluster in the constellation of Centaurus that was discovered by Edmond Halley in 1677. Located at a distance of 15,800 light-years (4,850 pc), it is the largest globular cluster in the Milky Way galaxy. Omega Centauri is so distinctive from the other galactic globular clusters that it is thought to have an alternate origin as the core remnant of a disrupted dwarf galaxy.
Imaging telescopes or lenses: Intes Micro MN84
Imaging cameras: QSI 583 wsg
Mounts: Astro-Physics 1200 GTO
Guiding cameras: Starlight Xpress Lodestar
Filters: Astrodon RGB filter set
Dates: May 14, 2011
Integration: 3.0 hours
Author: Dean Salman
AstroPhotography of the day by SPONLI
19 April 2014