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PostPosted: Sat Aug 03, 2013 5:58 pm 
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The Washington Examiner, a conservative rag owned by a CO billionaire, is all flappy about how we barely missed a Carrington Event a couple of weeks back.

A Carrington Event is an extreme magnetic storm, caused by very large CME from a solar flare of historic size. There's only been one, in the late 19th century, with equatorial aurora and ground currents so large that telegraphers received severe electric shocks. Such an event now would badly zap the power grid, and ruin your whole day... month... year.

Thing is, there was no historic flare a couple of weeks back. There was no X class flare at all. There were a few pissy little flares - real routine stuff.

There was no very large CME missing the Earth. There was no large CME hitting the earth. There were a couple of pissy little CMEs and coronal holes, causing a couple of pissy little magnetic storms barely worth mentioning.

The earth did certainly not avoid a Carrington class CME, because there was no Carrington class CME.

This kind of thing cannot be kept secret by governments. Too many people in too many countries observe the sun.

Don't believe everything in the media. ;-)

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 04, 2013 1:17 pm 
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Small coronal hole, a few blips in the magnetometers, some K indices just below storm threshold. Nothing's happening. It's the lowest solar peak since the Dalton Minimum in the 19th Century.

Maybe the Washington Examiner will call it a Carrington Event and blame it on Obama.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 06, 2013 7:07 pm 
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In the coming months, you are going to hear a great deal about solar magnetic reversal. Some of it will surely be apocalyptic. OMG the sun's magnetic field is reversing, we're all gonna die.

Only thing is, the field reverses every sunspot max. 11 years. Then a flip back in the next sunspot max in another 11 years. 22 years for a full cycle.

In fact, the field reversal is one theory for why there seem to be cycles of cycles. The sun's poles go in and out of phase over a period of time that's not predictable yet. Right now they're completely out, with one having already flipped and the other one getting ready to do so according to all observation.

If this out of phase condition is what suppresses the solar dynamo that causes sunspots in the first place, then once it completely flips we should get another solar peak like the one a while back. Double peaks have happened in the last couple of solar maxima.

If this out of phase condition gets the full 180 degrees out, the theory is that we'll have probably fewer sunspots or none at all, as has happened twice in recorded history.

Since flares don't have to come in solar maxima, the chance of these will never go to zero, and in fact the Carrington Event was when we were coming out of an extended sunspot minimum in the 19th century.

But the chance for them goes down by a LOT.

One more time, the sky is not falling, much as the media would like to get your attention for their advertising by telling you it is.

For more details and an explanation of the weird helical bent solar wind thing thing which we orbit through, go to this NASA link:

http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/sc ... fieldflip/

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"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 14, 2013 5:57 pm 
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Field hasn't reversed yet. Sunspots pop up, look nasty for a few days, then lose energy.

More dandy aurora coming up though. We have yet another geoeffective coronal hole. These can be long lived and just keep coming around for months. The dreaded Bz just turned south, though Kp is still way low.

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"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 1:36 pm 
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Some Kp's above storm threshold. Still unstable. Arrived right on schedule. Still no flares worth a second look. It's all from prominence eruptions and coronal holes.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 20, 2013 1:32 pm 
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Just a quickie: that full halo awesome and rather scary CME you see in the latest SOHO loops is far side and directly AWAY from the earth. A direct hit would have caused severe storming here, but space is a big place and three dimensional (for purposes of this discussion).

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:18 am 
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Nooz is talking about CMEs hitting the Earth with dire consequences starting sometime tomorrow.

What's really going to happen is that CMEs are going to hit the Earth with weenie consequences. It's one of those minor storming in polar regions maybe type of incidents. Mostly yet another round of this cycle's absolutely awesome aurora. The numbers have started moving somewhat in that direction.

It's not even getting dark early in Finland yet, and they had the aurora big time last night.

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2013 4:16 pm 
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Cancel the G1 magnetic storm. CME missed the Earth.

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:41 pm 
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Now some storming and yet more awesome aurora courtesy coronal hole not flare.

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--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 1:11 pm 
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C class (as in WUSSY) flare, with CME and all that, so our Canadian friends can continue the aurora watch. Rest of you people, leave the foil hat at home.

Right now the dreaded Bz is slightly south (Bz being a magnetic finger in the solar wind; south being rock and roll mode).

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:39 pm 
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Solar flux is 94. Helios, are you fracking kidding me?

We're close to going spotnil in a supposed solar peak. That doesn't happen.

The media's fracking foaming about Carrington Events, and we're close to a quiet sun condition when it should have a severe case of zits. I mean, really.

At least we still have coronal holes and filament eruptions for entertainment. Nice examples of both may aurora up the north... again.

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 12:31 pm 
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Filament eruptions continue... great fun... we're in S2 level proton radiation (don't spend too much time airborne in polar latitudes). Have been for a couple of days. Geomagnetic stuff impends, maybe, this weekend.

No flares of any consequence.

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:40 pm 
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Pretty decent magnetic storm to go with the proton event. Nothing historic, but in this weenie solar cycle, I'll take it. Obviously no effect I've heard of, though I was on an airplane flying through the proton event while it was happening. If a Carrington Event is assigned an arbitrary value of 100, this thing's about 0.7.

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"Words are the new bullets, satellites the new artillery"
--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 12:02 pm 
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Sun is still rather quiet on the side we see, though it's been blowing off some nice eruptions and CMEs elsewhere. Big news is more the Juno spacecraft which three days from time of posting this will fly within 370 miles of Earth for a gravity boost on its way to Jupiter.

One of the instruments on Juno will be transmitting on 10 meters and audible on pretty much any short wave receiver in the signal footprint. Those with ham radios are encouraged to spread out across a wide frequency range specified by the last letter of your call. Comm both ways is in QRSS - Morse code so slow that software is used to decode it. Zero time for this event is 3 days 2 hours from the time stamp on this post.

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"Words are the new bullets, satellites the new artillery"
--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 11:04 am 
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Nice bang-up M-class solar flare over on the sun's limb. M2.8 for those who like numbers, and very bright.

As I've often said, throw back anything smaller than class X. This one's under limit.

The region responsible will rotate into geoeffective position soon, though in this cycle that hasn't always meant much.

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 11:18 am 
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Slight correction to 10/6: Juno isn't transmitting anything. Hams and whoever else wants to play (illegally of course) transmit to it. We won't get to hear the kind of awesome Doppler shifts that spacecraft make.

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--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 11:23 am 
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Various CMEs caused a moderate geomagnetic event. Pretty good aurora in Canada and northern US. Bet nothing happened where you are.

In other news, it rained in L.A.. Trust me, that's newsworthy.

I wasn't there, but it rained here too, so I also got to remember what it looks like.

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"Words are the new bullets, satellites the new artillery"
--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 10:57 am 
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The general level of solar activity seems to be picking up. Maybe the much-discussed second peak is starting. Maybe not.

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 11:49 am 
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The fireworks have begun. We have ourselves a relatively decent solar flare, though still only M9.3 and not a threat to anything, and it's not the only one. We finally see something which looks even a little like peak activity.

Quote:
NOAA SWPC:

Solar-terrestrial indices for 23 October follow.
Solar flux 153 [good for this cycle -Z].

[Unremarkable A and K omitted, as these haven't reacted yet. -Z]

Space weather for the past 24 hours has been moderate.
Radio blackouts reaching the R2 level occurred.

Space weather for the next 24 hours is predicted to be minor.
Geomagnetic storms reaching the G1 level are likely.

(as of Thursday, October 24, 2013 11:10:02 AM)

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 12:09 pm 
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BINGO!

X1.7 at 0801 UTC (Night time in the US). Large radio blackout on the sunlit side (Europe, etc).

X2.1 at 1503 UTC (Morning in the US). Blacked out North American HF radio all the way past 10 meters for at least 15 minutes (longer on lower frequencies).

These are really kind of pissy examples of what X class can do, but they both made the top 10 of all flares in this wussy cycle.

No reports of any real problems. Too soon for power failures but sometimes satellites get damaged. Don't know of any such occurrence, nor is any expected.

The region responsible is not especially geoeffective for magnetic storm type effects though surely there'll be some minor wobbles.

It just shows (again) that anything under about X10 just isn't that big a deal unless it's absolutely positively in just the right place.

Mumbo jumbo follows:

Quote:
:Product: Geophysical Alert Message wwv.txt
:Issued: 2013 Oct 25 1550 UTC
# Prepared by the US Dept. of Commerce, NOAA, Space Weather Prediction Center
#
# Geophysical Alert Message
#
Solar-terrestrial indices for 24 October follow.
Solar flux 161 [Pretty respectable for this cycle -Z] and estimated planetary A-index 3.
The estimated planetary K-index at 1500 UTC on 25 October was 1.
[A and K not affected until arrival of CME if any. -Z]
Space weather for the past 24 hours has been strong.
Radio blackouts reaching the R3 level occurred. [That's getting up there. -Z]

Space weather for the next 24 hours is predicted to be minor.
Geomagnetic storms reaching the G1 level are likely.
Radio blackouts reaching the R1 level are likely.

(as of Friday, October 25, 2013 11:50:02 AM)

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 12:10 pm 
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DO check http://www.spaceweather.com/ to see what an interesting neighborhood our local star is right now. It's a-poppin, folks.

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 2:54 pm 
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We had an X class flare and several M class events last night (US time). The active region that did the X1 event has rotated out of geoeffective position, but another one is highly geoeffective, and it just produced am M class flare and CME.

I don't see any adverse effects from either, but eventually one of those charged particle clouds in the solar wind (which is what CME is - mostly massive particles such as protons) is going to at least stir things up a little. Again, mostly an aurora event. I'd be amazed if we actually lost any power grids or such.

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--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:14 pm 
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http://www.solarham.net/ has a short video, less technical/incomprehensible than many, on the anniversary of a Halloween superstorm.

I was thinking, hmm, Sandy didn't have any real connection to solar flares, but it turns out it's also the date of a bang-up X17 flare in the 2003 solar max. THAT one I kind of remember. It blew a very very strong and fast moving CME right at Earth.

That noise you see on the various videos from spacecraft is when the protons hit the photo-electric sensors and registered as light flashes. The spacecraft with the coronagraph over the sun is the SOHO, at a Lagrange point orbiting the sun. The protons appear much faster and in greater number than usual for this phenomenon. Note the disk with the line through it in one video. I think that's Mercury.

The aurora they talk about really happened that way. We had it in L.A.. It was too bright in the city to see it, but the Mt. Wilson webcam had it real nice.

Radio signals were, to say the least, bizarre. WWV the time station was being pushed around so much that the tones (considered the standard 500, 600, and 440 Hz for the US) were changing all over the place and even the time intervals were a bit ragged. I think there was some considerable satellite damage as well. It didn't affect the GPS. I don't recall any power failures.

Also usually after something this big, NORAD has to re-acquire every piece of space junk it's tracking and issue new orbital elements. That's something like 30,000 objects.

Also, migratory birds have been known to get lost. Really.

In other words, we got something maybe one magnitude at most short of a Carrington Event and really not all that much happened.

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"Words are the new bullets, satellites the new artillery"
--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:40 pm 
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Active region 1875 fired off a nice X2.3 just before taking cover behind the west limb. Doesn't look particularly geoeffective. Apparently caused another R3 level radio blackout. (These are caused by X-ray and extreme UV photons hitting the ionosphere and temporarily turning it opaque to high-frequency RF on the daylight side. Photons have no mass. They carry charges. CME stands for coronal MASS ejection, largely raw protons, Higgs field and all that, and its transit time to earth is in days instead of minutes........)

I would imagine that, were the ionosphere not there to absorb the energy and turn opaque, instead of HF radio fading out, people would. Ionizing and non-ionizing radiation are not good for you. This is one good reason not to monkey with the magnetosphere looking for cool new weapons.

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"Words are the new bullets, satellites the new artillery"
--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 1:39 pm 
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X3.3 flare yesterday afternoon (US time) at 2212 UTC. This was a very rapid and impulsive type of event, and associated CME seems light and directed largely away from Earth despite the highly geoeffective position of the underlying active region. The usual radio effects were present.

This is the 3rd largest flare of Cycle 24 (using the X-ray level metric). There is further indication here that (1) Cycle 24 is peaking; and (2) truly disruptive effects may be less than we've seen in the past few cycles.

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"Words are the new bullets, satellites the new artillery"
--"Winning CNN Wars," Army War College

"One bomb was shown on TV, and the American people bought that war. War is show business."
--"Wag the Dog"


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