Last major update issued on August 22, 2011 at 03:50 UTC. Minor update posted at 14:35 UTC
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Annotated geomagnetic activity charts - Carrington rotation 2111 [June-July 2011] - 2112 [July 2011] NEW
[Solar polar fields vs solar cycles - updated June 27, 2011]
The geomagnetic field was quiet on August 21. Solar wind speed ranged between 338 and 411 km/s.
Solar flux measured at 20h UTC on 2.8 GHz was 100.9 (increasing 13.9 over the last solar rotation). The planetary A index was 3 (STAR Ap - based on the mean of three hour interval ap indices: 3.4). Three hour interval K indices: 10002121 (planetary), 10012221 (Boulder).
The background x-ray flux is at the class B2 level.
At midnight UTC the visible solar disk had 5 spotted regions (in 2K resolution SDO images).
Region 11271 displayed no major changes and remains capable of
producing C flares.
Region 11272 developed quickly in the trailing spot section. Opposite polarity spot separation is poor in the center of the region. Further development will increase the likelihood of minor M class flaring. Flares: C1.5 at 18:40, C1.2 at 23:16 UTC
Region 11274 was quiet and stable.
New region 11275 rotated partly into view on August 20 and was numbered the next day by SWPC.
Spotted regions not numbered by NOAA/SWPC:
[S1171] reemerged on August 20 (spots were included in the count for region 11271) with both polarity spots visible on August 21. Location at midnight: N07E04
Minor update added at 14:35 UTC on August 22: Region 11271 has changed a lot today with trailing polarity spots emerging near the center of the region, now classified as DKC. The new penumbra is already the largest in the region, and a magnetic delta structure could be forming at the southwestern edge. Region 11274 has added a trailing spot in the far eastern polarity area, further growth could change the classification of the region to FRO or FSO. Otherwise CH472 has decayed significantly over the last day or so and could close before rotating out of view. The latest high resolution CHARMAP.
August 19-21: No obviously Earth directed CMEs were observed in LASCO or STEREO imagery.
Coronal hole history (since late October
Compare today's report to the situation one solar rotation ago: 28 days ago 27 days ago 26 days ago
A trans equatorial coronal hole (CH472) was in an Earth facing position on August 19-20. A recurrent coronal hole (CH473) in the northern hemisphere could rotate into an Earth facing position on August 24-25.
The above coronal hole map is based on a new method where coronal holes are detected automatically. The method may need some fine tuning, however, it has significant advantages over detecting coronal holes manually. The main improvement is the ability to detect coronal holes at and just beyond the solar limbs. Early results using this method for SDO images over a span of several weeks indicate a good match between coronal holes observed over the visible disk and their extent and position at the east and west limbs. Note that the polar coronal holes are easily detected using the new method, the extent and intensity of both holes are consistent with other data sources.
Long distance low and medium frequency (below 2 MHz) propagation along paths north of due west over high and upper middle latitudes is fair. Propagation on long distance northeast-southwest paths is poor.
The geomagnetic field is expected to be quiet to unsettled conditions with occasional active intervals on August 22-23 due to effects from CH472. Quiet conditions are likely on August 24-25.
|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
2) Effects from a CME are likely to be observed at 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.
(Click on image for higher resolution image) Compare to the previous day's image
When available the active region map has a coronal hole polarity overlay where red (pink) is negative and blue (blue-green) is positive.
Data for all numbered solar regions according to the Solar Region Summary provided by NOAA/SWPC. 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 SWPC or where SWPC has observed no spots. SWPC active region numbers in the table below and in the active region map above are the historic SWPC/USAF numbers.
|Active region||Date numbered
|Spot count||Location at midnight||Area||Classification||SDO / HMI 4K continuum
image with polarity overlay
|1||5||N06E68||0030||CRO||CSO||formerly region S1176
SWPC combination of 1 spot and CRO classification is impossible
|Total spot count:||26||73|
|Sunspot number:||66||123||(total spot count + 10 * number of spotted regions)|
|Classification adjusted SN:||42||91||(Sum of total spot count + classification adjustment for each AR. Classification adjustment: X=0, R=3, A/S=5, H/K=10)|
|Relative sunspot number (Wolf number):||40||41||k * (sunspot number). k = 0.6 for SWPC. k = 0.33 for STAR SDO|
|Month||Average measured solar flux||International sunspot number (SIDC)||Smoothed sunspot number||Average ap
|2008.07||65.7 (SF minimum)||0.5||2.8 (-0.4)|
|2010.05||73.8||8.7||15.5 (+1.5)||9.18 / 8.15|
|2010.06||72.5||13.6||16.4 (+0.9)||8.17 / 6.85|
|2010.07||79.8||16.1||16.7 (+0.3)||6.31 / 5.15|
|2010.08||79.2||19.6||17.4 (+0.7)||8.49 / 7.77|
|2010.09||81.1||25.2||19.6 (+2.2)||5.33 / 5.45|
|2010.10||81.6||23.5||23.2 (+3.6)||6.07 / 6.27|
|2010.11||82.5||21.5||26.5 (+3.3)||4.80 / 5.50|
|2010.12||84.2||14.4||28.8 (+2.3)||3.41 / 4.35|
|2011.01||83.6||19.1||31.0 (+2.2)||4.32 / 5.51|
|2011.02||94.6||29.4||(33.6 predicted, +2.6)||5.41 / 6.44|
|2011.03||115.0||56.2||(36.6 predicted, +3.0)||7.79 / 8.18|
|2011.04||112.6||54.4||(39.4 predicted, +2.8)||9.71 / 8.83|
|2011.05||95.8||41.6||(42.7 predicted, +3.3)||9.18 / 8.94|
|2011.06||95.8||37.0||(46.5 predicted, +3.8)||8.96|
|2011.07||94.2||43.9||(50.6 predicted, +4.1)||9.14|
|2011.08||100.6 (1)||39.5 (2A) / 58.2 (2B)||(54.8 predicted, +4.2)||(9.41)|
1) Running average based on the daily 20:00 UTC observed solar flux value at
2A) Current impact on the monthly sunspot number based on the Boulder (NOAA/SWPC) sunspot number (accumulated daily sunspots / month days). The official SIDC international sunspot number is typically 30-50% lower. 2B) Month average to date.
3) Running average based on the preliminary daily SWPC ap indices. Values in red are based on the official NGDC ap indices.
This report has been prepared by Jan Alvestad. It is based on analysis of data from whatever sources are available at the time the report is prepared. All time references are to the UTC day. Comments and suggestions are always welcome.
SDO images are courtesy of NASA/SDO and the AIA, EVE, and HMI science teams.