Last major update issued on September 30, 2012 at 02:55 UTC.
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[Solar cycles 21-24 (last update September 8, 2012)] [Cycle 24 progress (last update September 2, 2012) ]
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[POES auroral activity level since October
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[Solar polar fields vs solar cycles - updated June 27, 2011]
The geomagnetic field was quiet on September 29. Solar wind speed at SOHO ranged between 287 and 327 km/s.
Solar flux measured at 20h UTC on 2.8 GHz was 136.0 (decreasing 6.3 over the last solar rotation). The Potsdam WDC planetary A index was 4 (STAR Ap - based on the mean of three hour interval ap indices: 3.5). Three hour interval K indices: 01211011 (planetary), 01112211 (Boulder).
The background x-ray flux is at the class B5 level.
At midnight UTC the visible solar disk had 12 spotted active regions (in 2K resolution SDO images).
Region 11575 [N07W73] was quiet and stable. The flares that SWPC
attributes to this region occurred in AR 11583.
Region 11577 [N08W55] produced a few minor C flares and appears less interesting than a day ago.
Region 11579 [S10E07] was quiet and stable.
Region 11580 [N18E17] was quiet and stable.
Region 11582 [S12E29] was quiet and stable.
New region 11583 [N12W77] emerged on September 27 and was noticed by SWPC two days later. The group developed slowly and was the most active region on the visible disk producing 5 minor C flares.
Spotted regions not numbered by NOAA/SWPC:
S1936 [N06W26] was quiet and stable.
S1943 [N17E01] was quiet and stable.
S1944 [N17W66] reemerged with a few spots.
S1949 [S25W35] was quiet and stable.
New region S1951 [S19W03] emerged with tiny spots.
New region S1952 [N08W49] was split off from AR 11577.
September 27, 29: No obviously Earth directed CMEs were observed in LASCO and STEREO imagery.
September 28: A CME was observed in STEREO imagery early in the day following the long duration C3.7 event late on Sept.27. This CME will likely reach Earth on September 30.
Coronal hole history (since October
Compare today's report to the situation one solar rotation ago: 28 days ago 27 days ago 26 days ago
No obvious coronal holes are currently in or near Earth facing positions. A possible coronal hole in the northern hemisphere just north of the equator could rotate into an Earth facing position on October 1.
The above coronal hole map is based on a method where coronal holes are detected automatically. While the method may need some fine tuning, 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 this method, the extent and intensity of both CHs 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 good. Propagation on long distance northeast-southwest paths is poor.
The geomagnetic field is expected to be intially quiet on September 30. The CME observed early on Sept.28 will likely reach Earth on Sept.30 and cause active to major storm conditions until October 1. Quiet to unsettled is likely on October 2.
|Coronal holes (1)||Coronal mass ejection (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. 0.5k 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 magnetic polarity overlay
|Total spot count:||20||74||24|
|Sunspot number:||70||194||114||(total spot count + 10 * number of spotted regions)|
|Weighted SN:||50||109||59||(Sum of total spot count + classification weighting for each AR. Classification weighting: X=0, R=3, A/S=5, H/K=10)|
|Relative sunspot number (Wolf number):||42||68||63||k * (sunspot number). k = 0.6 for SWPC, k = 0.35 for STAR SDO 2K, k = 0.55 for STAR SDO 1K|
|Month||Average measured solar flux||International sunspot number (SIDC)||Smoothed sunspot number||Average ap
|2012.03||114.7||64.3||(67.3 projected, +0.4)||16.08|
|2012.04||113.0||55.2||(66.5 projected, -0.8)||10.10|
|2012.05||121.5||69.0||(64.4 projected, -2.1)||7.06|
|2012.06||119.6||64.5||(63.6 projected, -0.8)||10.08|
|2012.07||133.9||66.5||(64.6 projected, +1.0)||13.90|
|2012.08||115.4||63.1||(67.2 projected, +2.6)||7.96|
|2012.09||122.4 (1)||80.5 (2A) / 83.3 (2B) / 62.4 (2C)||(70.0 projected, +2.8)||(8.45)|
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. 2C) STAR SDO 1K Wolf number month to date.
3) Running average based on the quicklook and definitive Potsdam WDC ap indices. Values in red are based on the definitive international Potsdam WDC 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.