Solar activity has been very low over the past 24 hours. Background X-ray flux was around the B2 level, with an occasional B flare (the strongest peaking at B5.9 level at 18:48 UT). Catania sunspot group 20 (NOAA AR 2019) showed no significant growth that would require increasing it’s C flaring probability, while the new sunspot group 22 (NOAA unnumbered) does raise the full disc C flare potential. We nevertheless presently maintain the all quiet alert. No significant CME’s were observed.
Solar wind values became slightly enhanced around UT midnight, fluctuating since then in the 300-360 km/s range. The onset of that period was accompanied by a local maximum of the total magnetic field of over 8 nT, but it has declined continuously since then to around 4 nT presently. Bz was variable within that range. Geomagnetic conditions were quiet with local K Dourbes and NOAA Kp in the 1-2 range.
Nominal solar wind conditions and associated quiet geomagnetic conditions are expected over the next days.
Equipment: Coronado 90 + Imaging Source DMK + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.
Image Credit & Copyright: Ingólfur Bjargmundsson
Yes, but have you ever seen aurora from a cave? To capture this fascinating juxtaposition between below and above, astrophotographer Bjargmundsson spent much of a night alone in the kilometer-longRaufarhólshellir lava cave in Iceland during late March. There, he took separate images of three parts of the cave using a strobe for illumination. He also took a deep image of the sky to capture faint aurora, and digitally combined the four images later. The 4600-year old lava tube has several skylights under which stone rubble and snow have accumulated. Oh — the person standing on each mound — it’s the artist.
APOD NASA 22-Jul-2014
The Eagle Nebula is part of a diffuse emission nebula, or H II region, which is catalogued as IC 4703. This region of active current star formation is about 7000 light-years distant. The tower of gas that can be seen coming off the nebula is approximately 9.5 light-years or about 90 trillion kilometers long.
The brightest star in the nebula (HD 168076) has an apparent magnitude of +8.24, easily visible with good binoculars. It is actually abinary star formed of an O3.5V star plus an O7.5V companion.
The cluster associated with the nebula has approximately 460 stars, the brightest of spectral class O, a mass of roughly 80 solar masses, and a luminosity up to 1 million times that of the Sun. Its age has been estimated to be 1–2 million years.
The descriptive names reflect impressions of the shape of the central pillar rising from the southeast into the central luminous area. The name “Star Queen Nebula” was introduced by Robert Burnham, Jr., reflecting his characterization of the central pillar as the Star Queen shown in silhouette.
Imaging telescopes or lenses: AG Optical 12.5 IDK
Mounts: Paramount MX
Software: photoshop, DC-3 Dreams ACP, PixInsight PixInsinght 1.8 RC7, Maxim DL
Filters: Astrodon H-alpha 5nm, Astrodon E-series LRGB
Dates: June 18, 2014
Locations: New Mexico Skies
Author: Mike Miller
AstroPhotography of the day by SPONLI 22 July 2014