Last major update issued on March 16, 2011 at 04:25 UTC.
[Solar and geomagnetic data - last month (updated
[Solar wind and electron fluence charts (updated daily)
[Solar cycles 21-24 (last update March 2, 2011)]
[Solar cycles 1-20]
[Graphical comparison of cycles 21, 22, 23 and 24 (last update March 2, 2011)]
[Graphical comparison of cycles 10, 12, 13, 14, 16 and 24 (last update March 2, 2011)]
[Historical solar and geomagnetic data charts 1954-2006 (last update April 5, 2007)]
[Archived reports since January 2003 (last update March 1, 2011)]
[POES auroral activity level charts since October
2009 - updated March 11, 2011]
Annotated geomagnetic activity charts - Carrington rotation 2105 [Dec-Jan.2011] - 2106 [Jan.-Feb.2011] NEW
The geomagnetic field was inactive on March 15. Solar wind speed ranged between 359-558 km/s.
Solar flux measured at 20h UTC on 2.8 GHz was 101.5 (decreasing 12.6 over the last solar rotation). The planetary A index was 0 (STAR Ap - based on the mean of three hour interval ap indices: 0.3). Three hour interval K indices: 00000000 (planetary), 00001110 (Boulder).
The background x-ray flux is at the class B3 level.
At midnight UTC the visible solar disk had 5 spotted regions.
Region 11169 decayed further losing spots and penumbral area, the main
penumbra split into several smaller parts. C flares are possible. Flares: M1.0 at at 00:22, C1.4 at 06:57, C1.5 at
08:52, C2.6/1F at 09:42, C1.1 at 11:25, C2-9 at 17:35 UTC.
Region 11171 was quiet and stable.
Region 11172 did not change significantly and was quiet.
Spotted regions not numbered by NOAA/SWPC:
[S902] The region lost the spot in the northern part and regained a spot in the southern part. Location at midnight: N07W33.
[S905] A new region emerged quickly in the southeast quadrant on March 15. Location a midnight: S30E52
March 13-15: No obviously Earth directed CMEs were observed in LASCO and 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 small coronal hole (CH440) in the northern hemisphere was in an Earth facing position on March 15.
The darkest areas on the solar disk are likely coronal holes.
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 on March 16-20 with a possibility of unsettled intervals on March 18-19 due to effects from CH440.
|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
|11166||2011.03.02||5||N12W91||0150||DAI||rotated out of view|
|11171||2011.03.08||3||S19W29||0000||BXO||location of spots: S22W34|
|Total spot count:||17||25|
|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)|
|2009.12||76.7||10.8||8.3 (+0.7)||1.41 / 1.92|
|2010.01||81.1||13.2||9.3 (+1.0)||2.93 / 3.07|
|2010.02||84.7||18.8||10.6 (+1.3)||4.15 / 4.61|
|2010.03||83.4||15.4||12.3 (+1.7)||4.58 / 4.65|
|2010.04||75.9||8.0||14.0 (+1.7)||10.22 / 10.24|
|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||16.8 (+0.4)||6.31 / 5.15|
|2010.08||79.2||19.6||17.4 (+0.6)||8.49 / 7.77|
|2010.09||81.1||25.2||(19.1 predicted, +1.7)||5.33 / 5.45|
|2010.10||81.6||23.5||(21.7 predicted, +2.6)||6.07 / 6.27|
|2010.11||82.5||21.6||(24.5 predicted, +2.8)||4.80 / 5.50|
|2010.12||84.2||14.5||(26.9 predicted, +2.4)||3.41 / 4.35|
|2011.01||83.6||19.1||(29.0 predicted, +2.1)||4.32|
|2011.02||94.6||29.4||(31.1 predicted, +2.1)||5.41|
|2011.03||126.0 (1)||44.7 (2A) / 92.4 (2B)||(33.0 predicted, +1.9)||(12.11)|
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.