Solar activity has been quiet in the last 24 hours with the background X-ray flux steady around the B2 level. Only a couple of minor B flares have occurred. The largest was a B3.4 flare peaking around 8:47 UT associated with the unnumbered active region that is about to turn onto the visible solar disc from behind the East limb. There are currently only three active regions on the solar disc. NOAA AR 2018 and 2020 are stable alpha regions while the beta region 2019 does show signs of further development.
No significant CME’s were reported. Quiet conditions are expected to continue with only a slight chance on flaring at C level. The all quiet alert is presently maintained but this may need to be revised if NOAA AR 2019 continues to grow and depending on the nature of the active region(s) that are turning onto the disc from behind the East limb.Solar wind speed remained at low levels around the 280 km/s, while the interplanetary magnetic field increased to around the 6 nT level with Bz varying and currently reaching levels of around -4nT. Geomagnetic conditions were quiet with local K Dourbes and NOAA Kp in the
0-2 range. Quiet conditions are expected to continue although some influence of a coronal hole high speed stream can possibly cause enhanced solar wind conditions and associated unsettled geomagnetic conditions in the next 24 to 48 hours.
Equipment: Coronado 90 + Imaging Source DMK + LX75
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.
Image Credit: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team; MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA
Why does this comet’s nucleus have two components? The surprising discovery that Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko has a double nucleus came late last week as ESA’s robotic interplanetary spacecraft Rosetta continued its approach toward the ancient comet’s core. Speculative ideas on how the double core was created include, currently, that Comet Churyumov–Gerasimenko is actually the result of the merger of two comets, that the comet is a loose pile of rubble pulled apart by tidal forces, that ice evaporation on the comet has been asymmetric, or that the comet has undergone some sort of explosive event. Pictured above, the comet’s unusual 5-km sized comet nucleus is seen rotating over the course of a few hours, with each frame taken 20-minutes apart. Better images — and hopefully more refined theories — are expected as Rosetta is on track to enter orbit around Comet Churyumov–Gerasimenko’s nucleus early next month, and by the end of the year, if possible, land a probe on it.
APOD NASA 21-Jul-2014
NGC 5033 is an inclined spiral galaxy located in the constellation Canes Venatici. Distance estimates vary from between 38 to 60 million light years from the Milky Way Galaxy. The galaxy has a very bright nucleus and a relatively faint disk. Significant warping is visible in the southern half of the disk. The galaxy’s relatively large angular size and relatively high surface brightness make it an object that can be viewed and imaged by amateur astronomers. The galaxy’s location relatively near Earth and its active galactic nucleus make it a commonly studied object for professional astronomers.
Imaging telescopes or lenses: AG Optical 12.5 IDK
Imaging cameras: Apogee U16M
Mounts: Paramount MX
Software: photoshop, DC-3 Dreams ACP, PixInsight PixInsinght 1.8 RC7, Maxim DL
Filters: Astrodon E-series LRGB
Dates: June 21, 2014
Locations: New Mexico Skies
Integration: 11.5 hours
Author: Mike Miller
AstroPhotography of the day by SPONLI 21 July 2014