Posts Tagged ‘sun spots’

Solar Max Is Coming !

May 28, 2011 Comments off

Explosive Solar Eruption May 10th

May 10, 2011 Comments off

Solar Storms Season Heating Up

April 21, 2011 Comments off
Sunspots — cooler regions fraught with intense magnetic fields — now regularly dot the surface of the sun, and the star has unleashed several powerful flares in recent months, including...

Sunspots — cooler regions fraught with intense magnetic fields — now regularly dot the surface of the sun, and the star has unleashed several powerful flares in recent months, including a Feb. 14 blast that was the most powerful outburst in more than four years. All signs suggest that the sun has shaken itself out of its slumber, researchers say. After three years in a deep solar sleep of historic proportions, the sun is starting to wake up.

In 2008, the sun plunged into its least active state in nearly a century. Sunspots all but vanished, solar flares subsided and the star was eerily quiet. Quiet spells on the sun are nothing new. They come along every 11 years or so, as part of the sun’s natural activity cycle. But this latest solar minimum lasted longer than usual, prompting some researchers to wonder if it would ever end.

This year has started off with a bang, as sunspots are crackling with activity. Earth-orbiting satellites have detected Read more…

NASA: Huge Solar Flare Jamming Radio And Satellite Signals, Could Affect Electric Grid, Bright Auroras Expected

February 17, 2011 Comments off

According to NASA, a large solar eruption triggered a giant geomagnetic storm that has disturbed radio communications and could disrupt electrical power grids, radio and satellite communication in the next days

The calm before the storm. Three CMEs are enroute, all a part of the Radio Blackout events on February 13, 14, and 15 (UTC). The last of the three seems to be the fastest and may catch both of the forerunners about mid to late day tomorrow, February 17. Watch this space for updates on the impending — G2, possibly periods of G3 — geomagnetic storming.
Watch Today’s Space Weather for the most recent activity.

This is a composite image of the Sun at the moment of the X2.2 flare. Image courtesy of SDO


Credit: NASA/SDO

A strong wave of charged plasma particles emanating from the Jupiter-sized sun spot, the most powerful seen in four years, has already disrupted radio communication in southern China.

Solar Activity Forecast:  Read more…

M CLASS Solar Flare Headed Toward Earth

February 14, 2011 Comments off

Sunspot 1158 has just unleashed the strongest solar flare of the year, an M6.6-category blast @ 1738 UT on Feb. 13th and it is heading straight for Earth.

The eruption appears to have launched a coronal mass ejection (CME) toward Earth. It also produced a loud blast of radio emissions heard in shortwave receivers around the dayside of our planet. Amateur radio astronomer Thomas Ashcraft recorded these sounds. Stay tuned for updates!

Solar activity increased sharply over the weekend with the eruption of an M6.6-class solar flare from behemoth sunspot 1158.  The blast produced a strong burst of radio waves heard in the loudspeakers of shortwave receivers around the dayside of our planet, and it appears to have hurled a faint coronal mass ejection toward Earth.

Sunspot 1158 is growing rapidly (48 hour movie) and crackling with M-class solar flares. The active region is now more than 100,000 km wide with at least a dozen Earth-sized dark cores scattered beneath its unstable magnetic canopy. Earth-directed eruptions are likely in the hours ahead.

The remains of old sunspot complex 1147-1149 are rotating over the eastern limb today. Although the region is in an advanced state of decay, it’s not dead yet. During the late hours of Feb. 11th, a plasma bullet came rocketing out of the region’s unstable core. Watch the movie–but don’t blink, because it’s fast.

Movie formats: 21 MB Quicktime, 1.3 MB mpeg, 0.5 MB iPad. Credit: SDO

Huge coronal hole on Sun turning towards Earth

Blast from the Sun

The Deadly Sun

January 14, 2011 Comments off

Often we think of the deadly nature with the sun as one of fire and heat but the opposite can be true as well. If the sun doesn’t produce enough heat we on earth can can freeze – there is massive evidence of this in our geological record. Also think of how cold the planets in our own solar system get the further away from the sun they are.

Whilst scientists in some fields in recent decades want to play down the effects of the sun on the earth’s climate our climate history shows it plays a huge role. The sun typically has an 11 year cycle of sunspot activity which can extend and become quieter or contract and become more busy. History tells us when it is low in sunspots (typically a long cycle) then the world cools. At the moment Solar Cycle 24 is extending and losing it’s sunspots.

According to the Laymans Sunspot Count the sun today is again balnk of any sunspots. As we extend into solar cycle 24 we can get more of an idea of the anticipated peak of the cycle as it typically follows a curve when the sunspot number is smoothed (averaged). Looking at the graph of the sun from Layman’s Sunspot count website we see;

What we are witnessing in Solar Cycle 24 is a sunspot cycle that could peak as low as 30 – 35. It is currently tracking below Solar Cycle 5 which was part of a cold period on earth that correlated with the Dalton Minimum. We also find the sunspots are reducing in Read more…

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