Recently in the Space Weather Category


Improved Real-time Views Of The Sun

A groundbreaking new optical device, developed at NJIT's Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO) to correct images of the Sun distorted by multiple layers of atmospheric turbulence, is providing scientists with the most precisely detailed, real-time pictures to date of solar activity occurring across vast stretches of the star's surface.

Just hours after the winter solstice, a mass of energetic particles from the Sun smashed into the magnetic field around Earth.

Thermostat in Earth's Upper Atmosphere

A team led by the University of Colorado Boulder has found the mechanism behind the sudden onset of a "natural thermostat" in Earth's upper atmosphere that dramatically cools the air after it has been heated by violent solar activity.

Unusual Origins of High-Energy Electrons

High above the surface, Earth's magnetic field constantly deflects incoming supersonic particles from the sun.

Are Planets Setting Our Sun's Pace?

The Sun's activity is determined by the Sun's magnetic field. Two combined effects are responsible for the latter: The omega and the alpha effect.

For the first time beginning next month, forecasts of the regional effects of solar storms will help protect the power grid and communications satellites, thanks to a new tool developed by researchers at the University of Michigan and Rice University.

A new study by researchers at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, funded by the National Science Foundation, has identified for the first time a process by which the solar wind is heated along extended regions of the Earth's magnetic shield as it penetrates through this barrier.

SDO Witnesses A Double Eclipse

Early in the morning of Sept. 1, 2016, NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, caught both Earth and the moon crossing in front of the sun.

A solar storm that jammed radar and radio communications at the height of the Cold War could have led to a disastrous military conflict if not for the U.S. Air Force's budding efforts to monitor the Sun's activity, a new study finds.

The sun emitted three mid-level solar flares on July 22-23, 2016, the strongest peaking at 1:16 am EDT on July 23.

Earth's magnetosphere, the region of space dominated by Earth's magnetic field, protects our planet from the harsh battering of the solar wind.

SDO Peers Into Huge Coronal Hole

This imagery of the sun captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory from May 17-19, 2016, shows a giant dark area on the star's upper half, known as a coronal hole.

New findings based on a year's worth of observations from NASA's Van Allen Probes have revealed that the ring current an electrical current carried by energetic ions that encircles our planet behaves in a much different way than previously understood.

Like sending sensors up into a hurricane, NASA has flown four spacecraft through an invisible maelstrom in space, called magnetic reconnection.

The Impact of the Solar Wind

From our vantage point on the ground, the sun seems like a still ball of light, but in reality, it teems with activity.

Towering Magnetic Arches On The Sun

Arches of magnetic field lines towered over the sun's edge as a pair of active regions began to rotate into view in this video captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory on April 5-6, 2016.

Coronal Hole Observed On The Sun

A long coronal hole can be seen right down the middle of the sun in this video captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory on March 23-25, 2016.

The New Horizons spacecraft sent back over three years worth of measurements of the solar wind the constant flow of solar particles that the sun flings out into space from a region that has been visited by only a few spacecraft.

Space weather scientist Liz MacDonald has seen auroras more than five times in her life, but it was the aurora she didn't see that affected her the most.

On March 9, 1989, a huge cloud of solar material exploded from the sun, twisting toward Earth.

Cascading Magnetic Arches on The Sun

A dark solar filament above the sun's surface became unstable and erupted on Dec. 16-17, 2015, generating a cascade of magnetic arches.

The geomagnetic storming watch for 30 December has been upgraded to a G3 (Strong), with a G1 (Minor) storming watch still in effect for 31 December.

A rocket was launched on Sunday 13 December 2015 to study the Earth's magnetic field above Norway.

Reviving STEREO-B

On Oct. 1, 2014, NASA mission operations lost communication with one of the two spacecraft of the Solar and Terrestrial Relations Observatory, or STEREO, mission, just as the spacecraft was about to orbit around the other side of the sun.

For scientists studying the impacts of space weather, one of the central mysteries of solar flares.

The Sun demonstrates the potential to superflare, new research into stellar flaring suggests.

A Look Back at NASA Solar Missions

Twenty years ago, the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory launched into space and revolutionized our study of the sun and a scientific discipline called heliophysics.

This winter, two sounding rockets will launch through the aurora borealis over Norway to study how particles move in a region near the North Pole where Earth's magnetic field is directly connected to the solar wind.

SDO Sees a Dark Filament Circle On The Sun

A dark, almost circular filament broke away from the sun in a gauzy, feathery swirl, on Nov. 15, 2015, in this video from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory.

New research led by physicists at the University of Warwick has used tools designed to study social networks to gain significant new insights into the Northern Lights, and space weather particularly the interaction of events in the sun's atmosphere with Earth's ionosphere.

SDO Sees The Sun Emit a Mid-level Flare

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 8:13 p.m. EDT on Oct. 1, 2015.

SDO Captures Image of Mid-class Solar Flare

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 10:58 a.m. EDT on Sept. 28, 2015.

Images of a Mid-level Solar Flare Today

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 3:33 a.m EDT on Aug. 24, 2015.

The Sunspot Number, the longest scientific experiment still ongoing, is a crucial tool used to study the solar dynamo, space weather and climate change.

STEREO-A Is Sending Images Again

On July 11, 2015 we received our first images in over three months from NASA's Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory Ahead spacecraft, or STEREO-A.

The universe overflows with repeating patterns. From the smallest cells to the largest galaxies, scientists are often rewarded by observing similar patterns in vastly different places.

NuSTAR Views The X-ray Sun

X-rays light up the surface of our Sun in a bouquet of colors in this new image containing data from NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR.

Sun Emits M7.9-Class Solar Flare

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 4:16 a.m. EDT on June 25, 2015.

Sun Unleashes Mid-level Flare

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 2:23 p.m. EDT on June 22, 2015. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event. Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation.

What began as a chat between husband and wife has evolved into an intriguing scientific discovery.

Our sun is a volatile star: explosions of light, energy and solar materials regularly dot its surface.

DSCOVR Reaches Final Orbit

More than 100 days after it launched, NOAA's Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) satellite has reached its orbit position about one million miles from Earth.

Giant Filaments on the Sun

A pair of giant filaments on the face of the sun have formed what appears to be an enormous arrow. If straightened out, each filament would be about as long as the sun's diameter, 1 million miles long.

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured these images of a significant solar flare as seen in the bright flash on the left peaking at 6:11 p.m. EDT on May 5, 2015.

The sun's surface is blisteringly hot at 10,340 degrees Fahrenheit -- but its atmosphere is another 300 times hotter.

Protecting Earth From Bad Space Weather

This week's spectacular glowing auroras in the night sky further south than usual highlighted the effect that 'space weather' can have on Earth.

Following a successful launch at 10:44 p.m. EDT Thursday, NASA's four Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) spacecraft are positioned in Earth's orbit to begin the first space mission dedicated to the study of a phenomenon called magnetic reconnection.

Sun Emits Significant Solar Flare

The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 12:22 p.m. EDT on March 11, 2015.

First Notable Solar Flare of 2015

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 11:24 p.m. EST on Jan. 12, 2015.

Severe Space Weather Warning

NOAA has issued a space weather warning of the potential for a geomagnetic K-index of 7 or greater. Severe to extreme space weather conditions may result. Resulting aurora may be seen as low as Pennsylvania to Iowa to Oregon.

The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 7:24 p.m. EST on Dec. 19, 2014. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

Auroras are the most visible manifestation of the sun's effect on Earth, but many aspects of these spectacular displays are still poorly understood.

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 11:50 p.m. EST on Dec. 16, 2014.

Sun Emits a Mid-Level Flare

On Dec. 4, 2014, the sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 1:25 p.m. EST.

In March of 2015, an unprecedented NASA mission will launch to study a process so mysterious that no one has ever directly measured it in action.

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 12:48 p.m. EST on Nov. 16, 2014.

As the largest sunspot group of Solar Cycle 24 rotated over to the edge of the Sun, it put on a wonderful display of coronal loops (Oct. 26 - 29, 2014).

SDO Sees a Mid-Level Solar Flare

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 5:40 p.m. EST on Nov. 3, 2014. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

Proba-2 Celebrates Five Years in Orbit

ESA's Proba-2 celebrates five years in orbit today. From technology demonstrator to solar observatory and now space weather platform, the mission has provided triple value to European scientists.

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, an M6.6-class, peaking at 11:32 pm EDT on Oct. 28, 2014.

Second Substantial Flare in Two Days

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 9:59 p.m. EDT on Oct. 21, 2014. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which is always observing the sun, captured an image of the event.

The sun emitted a significant solar flare on Oct. 19, 2014, peaking at 1:01 a.m. EDT.

New Clues to Determining the Solar Cycle

Approximately every 11 years, the sun undergoes a complete personality change from quiet and calm to violently active. The height of the sun's activity, known as solar maximum, is a time of numerous sunspots, punctuated with profound eruptions that send radiation and solar particles out into the far reaches of space.

NASA's twin Van Allen Probes will celebrate on Saturday two years of studying the sun's influence on our planet and near-Earth space.

The Sun sported a whole slew of substantial sunspots over the past 11 days (July 1-10, 2014).

On July 14, 2014, a sounding rocket will be ready to launch from White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico a little before noon local time. Soaring up to 180 miles into Earth's atmosphere, past the layers that can block much of the sun's high energy light, the Degradation Free Spectrometers experiment will have six minutes to observe the extreme ultraviolet and soft x-rays streaming from the sun, in order to measure the sun's total energy output, known as irradiance, in these short wavelengths.

Understanding the sun from afar isn't easy. How do you figure out what powers solar flares - the intense bursts of radiation coming from the release of magnetic energy associated with sunspots - when you must rely on observing only the light and particles that make their way to near-Earth's orbit?

Three X-class flares erupted from the left side of the sun June 10-11, 2014. These images are from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and show light in a blend of two ultraviolet wavelengths: 171 and 131 angstroms. The former is colorized in yellow; the latter, in red.

Sun Emits Large X2.2 Flare

The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 7:42 a.m. EDT on June 10, 2014.

M1.3 Class Solar Flare

A class M1.3 flare can be observed from the Central-East active region on 3 June 2014 (~13 seconds into the movie), and a large prominence eruption followed by a spectacular expanding flare ribbon can be seen located to the South East, on 4 June 2014 (~33 sec into the movie). Note that on the Sun, East and West are reversed.

Cutting-edge observations with the 1.6-meter telescope at Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO) in California have taken research into the structure and activity of the Sun to new levels of understanding.

Scientist John Dorelli explains the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission's orbit and why the four spacecraft fly in a tetrahedron formation. This complex arrangement enables scientists to gather data about magnetic reconnection in 3D.

The bright light on the left side of the sun shows an M5.2-class solar flare in progress on May 8, 2014.This image, captured by NASA's SDO, shows light with a 131 Angstrom wavelength, which highlights the extremely hot material in a solar flare and is typically colorized in teal.

On March 29, 2014, an X-class flare erupted from the right side of the sun... and vaulted into history as the best-observed flare of all time.

Two years ago, an intense solar storm, a coronal mass ejection (CME) from the Sun, narrowly missed Earth. If it had hit, researchers say, we could still be picking up the pieces.