Tag Archives: sunspots

The Sun Online and solar activity. September 9, 2014

There are currently 8 sunspot groups visible. NOAA 2157 seems to be slightly declining and simplifying. NOAA 2158 developed some small spots to the west and south of the main spot. Except for the northern part, this main spot is now completely surrounded by opposite magnetic polarity flux. Both NOAA 2157 and 2158 retained their delta structures. Two C-class flares and 1 M-class flare were recorded. The strongest event was a long duration M4.5 flare peaking at 00:29UT and originating in NOAA 2158. SDO/AIA-imagery indicated post-flare coronal loops, coronal dimming and an EIT-wave. A type II radio-burst with an associated shock speed of 999 km/s was observed. The greater than 10 MeV proton flux, currently still enhanced at 2 pfu, has not increased in response to this flare (so far).   The M4.5 flare was associated to a halo CME first observed by SOHO/LASCO on 9 September at 00:06UT, with a plane-of-the-sky speed around 560 km/s . The bulk of the CME is directed away from the Earth (to the northeast), but there’s still a good chance Earth will be impacted by the CME-driven shock. Estimated impact time is 12 September at 03:00UT, with an uncertainty of 12 hours.    
There remains a reasonable chance on an M-class flare. The warning condition for a proton event remains in effect.
Solar wind speed was mostly between 350 and 450 km/s, with Bz oscillating between +5 and -5 nT. Geomagnetic conditions were quiet.
Quiet to unsettled geomagnetic conditions are expected for the next three days, possibly modulated by the high speed stream from a coronal hole that passed the central meridian on 5 September. On 10 September, there’s a chance on unsettled conditions with an isolated active period in response to the possible glancing blow from the 6 September CME. On 12 September, the impact of the halo CME related to the M4.5 flare from 9 September may result in active conditions and possibly a brief period of minor
geomagnetic storming. 
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 09/08/14
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

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Spotty Sunrise over Brisbane 

SpottyBrisbaneSunriseMudge_1350px
Image Credit & Copyright: Stephen Mudge

In this composite cityscape, dawn’s first colors backdrop the lights along Brisbane’s skyline at the southeastern corner of Queensland, Australia, planet Earth. Using a solar filter, additional exposures made every 3.5 minutes follow the winter sunrise on July 8 as planet-sized sunspots cross the visible solar disk. The sunspots mark solar active regions with convoluted magnetic fields. Even as the maximum in the solar activity cycle begins to fade, the active regions produce intense solar flares and eruptions launching coronal mass ejections (CMEs), enormous clouds of energetic particles, into our fair solar system.

APOD NASA 11-Jul-14

The Sun Online and solar activity. July 8, 2014

The strongest flare of the past 24 hours, a C4.0 flare peaking at 09:02 UT, originated from Catania sunspot group 16 (NOAA active region 2113). This region has grown in size and complexity. Catania sunspot groups 6 and 9 (NOAA AR 2108 and 2109) keep their delta component and retain their flaring
potential with a moderate chance for M-class flares.
 Solar wind speed is between 290 to 350 km/s, as measured by ACE. The interplanetary magnetic field reached a magnitude of 10 nT with a fluctuating Bz. Geomagnetic conditions have been quiet and are expected to remain so until the arrival of a fast speed stream from a small coronal hole that is expected to result in active conditions on July 9-10.
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 07/08/14
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

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The Sun Online and solar activity. July 7, 2014

Catania AR 9 (NOAA 2109) produced the strongest flare in the past 24 hours (C4.3 peak at 08:02 UT). This AR together with Catania 6 (NOAA 2108) have potential for M-class flares.Geomagnetic conditions have been quiet and are expected to remain so until the arrival of a fast speed stream from a small coronal hole that will increase the conditions up to active levels on July 9-10.
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 07/07/14
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

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The Sun Online and solar activity. July 6, 2014

There are currently 11 sunspot groups visible on the solar surface. NOAA 2108 and 2109 are the most prominent regions. NOAA 2108 increased its sunspot area and developed a weak delta in its trailing main spot. NOAA 2109 also developed a weak delta, located in the eastern portion of the main (leading) spot. Only three C-class flares were reported. The strongest, a C4.0 peaking on 6 July at 00:25UT, had its source in NOAA 2109, whereas NOAA 2108 produced a C3.5 flare peaking at 07:00UT.
C-class flares are expected, with a chance on an M-class flare from NOAA 2108 and 2109. Solar wind speed declined from 290 to 250 km/s until 09:30UT, when a sudden increase back to 290 km/s was observed. Bz varied the entire period between -6 and +4 nT. Geomagnetic conditions were quiet and are expected to remain so as Earth is crossing different sectors of the heliospheric current sheet.
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 07/06/14
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

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The Sun Online and solar activity. July 3, 2014

Only 4 C-class events were observed over the last 24 hours. The strongest reached a maximum of C2.6 at 03:59UT (3 July) and originated from a region just behind the Sun’s east limb. It was associated to a fast, not Earth-directed CME (about 1400 km/s). Of the 9 visible sunspot groups, NOAA 2104 remains the largest and most complex region, still having a magnetic delta. However, it did not produce a C-class flare. NOAA 2100, 2106 and 2107 produced each a C1-flare. The long filaments resp. near NOAA 2106, about 20 degrees west of NOAA 2107, and in the southwest quadrant, are still present but -for the moment- stable.
C-class flares are expected, with a chance on an isolated M-class flare.    A solar wind structure arrived at ACE near 23:30UT. Wind speed jumped from about 320 to 350 km/s. Bz turned southward around 02:30UT and remained between -4 and -8 nT for nearly 9 hours before returning to positive values. The impact on the geomagnetic field was minimal, as only quiet geomagnetic conditions have been recorded so far (K < 4). A small equatorial coronal hole that passed the central meridian on 30 June may affect Earth on 4 July.  Quiet geomagnetic conditions are expected, with locally a brief active
episode possible.
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 07/03/14
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

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The Sun Online and solar activity. June 30, 2014

There are currently 8 sunspot groups visible, with NOAA 2104 and NOAA 2107 the most complex and having a small delta. These two regions, together with an active area near the northeast limb, produced most of the C-class flares observed during the last 24 hours. The strongest event was a C3.4-flare peaking at 04:19UT on 30 June. No CMEs with an Earth directed component were observed. Further C-class flares are expected, with a chance on an M-class flare in particular from NOAA 2104. The solar wind speed was around 350 km/s over the last 24 hours. Bz was negative between 22:00 and 02:00UT (max. value around -8 nT), then mainly positive at +5 nT. Geomagnetic conditions were quiet with an usettled period around midnight. A small equatorial coronal hole passed the central meridian early on 27 June and may influence the geomagnetic field on 1 July. 
Quiet geomagnetic conditions are expected, with locally a brief active episode possible.
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 06/30/14
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

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The Sun Online and solar activity. June 20, 2014

Six sunspot groups were reported by Catania today. Only three C-class flares took place during the past 24 hours, and all of them occurred in the Catania sunspot group 89 (that, together with the Catania sunspot group 90, constitutes the NOAA AR 2093). The strongest flare of this time interval was the C5.0 flare peaking today at 11:20 UT. The flare was accompanied by coronal dimmings and a post-eruption arcade indicating the eruption of a CME. However, no coronagraph data are available at the moment to confirm the CME occurrence. We expect further flaring activity on the C-level, mostly from this sunspot group, with an M-class flare being possible but not very likely. A partial halo CME was detected by  SOHO/LASCO on June 19, first appearing in the LASCO C2 field of view at 19:24 UT (first frame after a long data gap). The CME had the angular width of around 190 degrees and projected plane-of-the-sky speed of around 400 km/s. The CME was produced by the eruption of a filament to the north of the Catania sunspot groups 89 and 90 (together constituting the NOAA AR 2093), starting around 14:25 UT as seen by SDO/AIA. The eruption was also accompanied by coronal dimmings and a post-erution arcade. It was followed by a perhaps related C4.0 flare peaking at 19:24 UT in the Catania sunspot group 89. This flare was, in turn, accompanied by a narrow CME first appearing in the LASCO C2 field of view at 19:48 UT. This narrow CME is not expected to arrive at the Earth. An interplanetary disturbance associated with the  partial halo CME is expected to arrive at the Earth late on June 23 or early on June 24, most probably only with a glancing blow. It may result in active to perhaps minor storm geomagnetic conditions. The Earth is currently inside a slow (around 430 km/s) solar wind flow with slightly elevated (around 6 nT) interplanetary magnetic field magnitude. The geomagnetic conditions are quiet and are expected to remain so.
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 06/20/14
Time UT: 16:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

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The Sun Online and solar activity. June 12, 2014

During last 24 hours four M-class flares were reported, and the strongest one was a M2.7 flare which originated from the Catania sunspot group 81 (NOAA AR 2087). The flare peaked at 10:21 UT on June 12 and was possibly associated with the CME (based on SDO/AIA data).  More will be reported as soon as coronagraph data become available. The X1.0 flare (peaking at 09:06 UT) on June 11, M3.9 flare (peaking at 21:03 UT) on June 11 and the M2.0 flare (peaking at 04:21 UT) on June 12 were associated with narrow CMEs which will therefore not arrive at the Earth. The faint halo CME first seen in the SOHO LASCO C2 field of view at 14:36 UT, on June 10  had angular width of about 270 degrees. The bulk of the CME mass was directed northward from the Sun-Earth line. Currently available data give no indications about
possible on disc signatures of the CME. We do not expect this CME to arrive at the Earth. The faint partial halo CME first seen in the SOHO LASCO C2 field of view at 18:00 UT, on June 10 had angular width of about 180 degrees and the bulk of the CME mass  directed north-east from the Sun-Earth line. From the currently available data it seems that the CME was associated with the flare at E170 as seen from the Earth, and will therefore not arrive at the Earth. We expect C-class, M-class and X-class flares in the coming hours, in particular from the Catania sunspot groups 81, 69 and 76 (NOAA AR 2087, 2080 and 2085, respectively). Due to the position of the Catania sunspot groups 69 and 76 (NOAA AR 2080 and 2085, respectively) on the western solar hemisphere, we maintain the warning condition for a proton event.
The Earth is still inside the fast solar wind (speed of about 500 km/s).  The interplanetary magnetic field magnitude is about 4 nT. The geomagnetic conditions are at the moment quiet and expected to remain so in the following hours. The glancing blow associated with the halo CME from June 10 is expected to arrive at the Earth in the morning of June 13, and it might result in active geomagnetic conditions.
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 06/12/14
Time UT: 20:00
Exposure 1/500 sec.

Observatory SPONLI

  

The Sun Online and solar activity. April 20, 2014

Twelve active regions were reported by NOAA today. Three of them (NOAA ARs 2034, 2035, and 2036) have beta-gamma configuration of the photospheric magnetic field. These three active regions and four others were responsible for numerous C-class flares yesterday and today. None of them was associated with an Earth-directed CME. The strongest flare of the past 24 hours was the C6.4 flare peaking at  08:13 UT today in the NOAA AR 2032 at the west solar limb. We expect further flaring activity on the C-level,
with a good chance for an M-class event. An interplanetary shock-like structure was detected this morning. ACE recorded jumps of solar wind speed, temperature, and the interplanetary magnetic filed (IMF) magnitude at 10:23 UT. SOHO/CELIAS detected a jump in density at 10:22 UT, but the jump in speed was detected only 20 to 30 minutes later. Therefore, this discontinuity does not seem to be a typical ICME-driven fast forward shock as ACE did not detect a jump in density at all, and jumps in density and
the solar wind speed detected by SOHO/CELIAS were not simultaneous. There is, however, very little doubt that this is a start of an ICME corresponding to the halo CME observed on the Sun on April 18. During the intervals of the strongest IMF magnitude in the post-shock solar wind flow (up to 22 nT), the north-south IMF component Bz was either northward or close to zero. Unsettled geomagnetic conditions (K = 3) were reported by Dourbes and NOAA, and active conditions (K = 4) were reported by IZMIRAN.
Currently the IMF magnitude is around 12 nT and the solar wind speed is around 650 km/s, so minor geomagnetic storm conditions (K = 5) are still possible. After the arrival of the shock-like structure, the proton flux at energies above 10 MeV decreased to values below the threshold of the proton event. The proton flux, however, remains high, and in case of another solar eruption with associated SEPs, the event threshold could be easily crossed. We therefore issue a warning condition for a proton event.
SIDC

Equipment: Coronado 90 +  Imaging Source DMK  + LX75
Processing: Photoshop, Avistack 300 frames
Date: 04/20/14
Time UT: 19:00
Exposure 1/182 sec.

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