Last major update issued on December 20, 2003 at 02:40 UTC.
[Solar and geomagnetic data - last month (updated daily)]
[Solar wind and electron fluence charts (updated daily)]
[Solar cycles 21-23 (last update December 2, 2003)]
[Solar cycles 1-20]
[Graphical comparison of cycles 21, 22 and 23 (last update December 2, 2003)]
[Graphical comparison of cycles 2, 10, 13, 17, 20 and 23 (last update December 2, 2003)]
[Historical solar and geomagnetic data charts 1954-2003 (last update October 15, 2003)]
[Archived reports (last update December 17, 2003)]
The geomagnetic field was quiet to unsettled on December 19. Solar wind speed ranged between 292 and 353 km/sec. Solar wind speed increased at midnight at ACE and continues to increase slowly early on Dec.20 as the high speed stream from coronal hole CH72 begins to dominate the solar wind.
Solar flux measured at 20h UTC on 2.8 GHz was 122.5. The planetary A
index was 7 (STAR Ap - based on the mean of three hour interval ap indices: 8.3).
Three hour interval K indices: 21123322 (planetary), 10001011 (Boulder).
The background x-ray flux is at the class B6 level.
At midnight there were 6 spotted regions on the visible disk. Solar flare activity was low. A total of 10 C class events were recorded during the day.
Region 10520 was quiet and stable.
Region 10523 decayed slowly and quietly.
Region 10524 decayed and was quiet.
Region 10525 developed slowly with most of the development occurring in the central section. The largest penumbra has a magnetic delta structure. A minor M class flare is possible. Flares: C2.5 at 00:28, C4.6 at 01:07, C2.1 at 07:03, C1.7 at 07:19, C9.3 at 08:18 (simultaneous flare observed in region 10528), C5.9 at 12:31, C5.4 at 16:46, C2.4 at 21:49 and C1.9 at 22:11 UTC.
Region 10528 developed slowly and could produce a minor M class flare. Flare: C2.0 at 01:39 UTC.
Spotted regions not numbered by NOAA/SEC:
[S326] This region emerged early on December 19 near the central meridian in the northern hemisphere. Location at midnight: N09W04.
December 17-19: No partly or fully earth directed CMEs observed.
Coronal hole history (since late October 2002)
Compare today's report with the situation one solar rotation ago: 28 days ago 27 days ago 26 days ago
A recurrent coronal hole in the northern hemisphere (CH72) with a trans equatorial extension was in a geoeffective position on December 17-19.
Processed SOHO/EIT 284 image at 19:06 UTC on December 19. The darkest areas on the solar disk are likely coronal holes.
The geomagnetic field is expected to be quiet to unsettled early on Dec.20. then become unsettled to minor storm as the high speed stream from coronal hole CH72 increases in intensity.
Long distance low frequency (below 2 MHz) propagation along east-west paths over high and upper middle latitudes is very poor. Propagation along long distance north-south paths is fair. [Trans Atlantic propagation conditions are currently monitored every night on 1470 kHz. Dominant stations tonight: Radio Cristal del Uruguay and Radio Rafaela (Argentina). Numerous stations from Brazil were heard as well].
|Coronal holes (1)||Coronal mass ejections (2)||M and X class flares (3)|
1) Effects from a coronal hole could reach Earth within the next 5 days. When the high speed stream has arrived
the color changes to green.
2) Material from a CME is likely to impact Earth within 96 hours.
3) There is a possibility of either M or X class flares within the next 48 hours.
Green: 0-20% probability, Yellow: 20-60% probability, Red: 60-100% probability.
Compare to the previous day's image.
Data for all numbered solar regions according to the Solar Region Summary provided by NOAA/SEC. Comments are my own, as is the STAR spot count (spots observed at or inside a few hours before midnight) and data for regions not numbered by SEC or where SEC has observed no spots. SEC active region numbers in the table below and in the active region map above are the historic SEC/USAF numbers.
|Active region||Date numbered||SEC
|Location at midnight||Area||Classification||Comment|
classification was HAX
classification was HSX
classification was DAI
at midnight, area 0200
classification was EAI
|Total spot count:||43||51|
flux at Earth
|International sunspot number||Smoothed sunspot number|
cycle 23 sunspot max.
|2003.06||129.3||77.4||(65.1 predicted, -2.5)|
|2003.07||127.7||83.3||(61.8 predicted, -3.3)|
|2003.08||122.1||72.7||(58.8 predicted, -3.0)|
|2003.09||112.2||48.7||(56.9 predicted, -1.9)|
|2003.10||151.7||65.6||(54.1 predicted, -2.8)|
|2003.11||140.8||67.2||(51.4 predicted, -2.7)|
|2003.12||106.9 (1)||46.1 (2)||(48.9 predicted, -2.5)|
1) Running average based on the daily 20:00 UTC observed solar flux value at 2800 MHz.
2) Unofficial, accumulated value based on the Boulder (NOAA/SEC) sunspot number. The official international sunspot number is typically 30-50% less.
This report has been prepared by Jan Alvestad. It is based partly on my own observations and analysis, and partly on data from sources noted in solar links. All time references are to the UTC day. Comments and suggestions are always welcome.