Solar Activity

Real Time Solar Activity

Sunspots and solar flares are the most important thing to aurora watchers. If we have lots of sunspots, then there are good chances of some serious solar flares (M and X class) and therefore very good chance for auroras.

Using this page you can monitor the suns activity, including sunspots, solar flares, coronal holes, CME’s etc. The images are the very latest images available and are provided by the worlds leading space weather labs. Some images update faster than others, so the term real time is not strictly true for some of them, but it’s as close to real time as we will likely ever get monitoring something 149 million kilometres away (92 million miles). If you are new to all this and your not quite sure what it all means, have a read of these pages and it should start to make sense: Solar Flare wiki and Sunspot wiki

Click the images to enlarge them.

Latest GOES Solar X-ray Image

Current Sunspots

193 ångström image
(Good for checking Coronal Holes)

Lasco C2 image aurora borealis
Latest Lasco C2 image
(Good for checking CME’s)

GOES 6 hour X-ray Flux (Monitors Solar Flares | 6 hour graph)
(Updated every minute)

GOES 3 day X-ray Flux (Monitors Solar Flares | 3 day graph)
(Updated every 5 minutes)

Real Time Solar Flare List

Any flares that show up on the real time images above, will show on this table within a few minutes (it takes a few minutes to determine which sunspot the solar flare originated from). The table displays the last 5 solar flares (the very latest flare will be at the bottom). Note, the flare has to have finished flaring to show up, if you see on the X ray images above that a flare is in progress, it won’t show up here until it’s done. This data is provided by Lockheed Martin Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory which is a department of the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center (ATC) in Palo Alto, California.

Event#NameStartStopPeakGOES ClassSunspot No.
16gev_20150329_14132015/03/29 14:13:0014:23:0014:19:00C1.8 N17W87 ( 2308 )
17gev_20150329_15242015/03/29 15:24:0015:38:0015:30:00C3.2 N17W79 ( 2308 )
18gev_20150329_17392015/03/29 17:39:0017:46:0017:43:00C1.4 N19W79 ( 2308 )
19gev_20150329_18452015/03/29 18:45:0020:21:0019:42:00C1.6 S13W34 ( 2305 )
20gev_20150330_01382015/03/30 01:38:0001:52:0001:52:00C4.7 N15W78 ( 2308 )


Solar summary past 24 hours

  • 12th March

    Solar activity reached high levels during the period. At approximately
    11/1622 UTC, Region 2297 (S16W00, Dkc/beta-gamma-delta) produced an
    impulsive X2/2b flare with associated Type II (est. shock speed 1461
    km/s) and Type IV radio emissions, as well as a 160 sfu Tenflare.
    SDO/AIA imagery observed ejecta leaving the flare location in a mostly
    easterly direction. This region also produced an M1/1n flare at 11/1851
    UTC and an M3 flare at 12/0446 UTC. Numerous mid to upper-level C-class
    flares were also observed from this region over the past 24 hours.

    Region 2299 (S07E53, Bxo/beta) rotated onto the East limb and was
    numbered during the period. This new region produced a C7 flare at
    12/0218 UTC with an associated Type II radio sweep (est. shock speed
    1903 km/s). No LASCO coronagraph imagery is available. However, based on
    the location of the spot group, any associated coronal mass ejection
    (CME) that may originate from this area will likely be too far East of
    the Sun-Earth line. Region 2298 (S11W52, Cro/beta) continued to develop
    slightly but remained quiescent.

    Due to an extended outage of SOHO LASCO coronagraph imagery, accurate
    analysis of any CMEs associated with the X2, M1, and M3 flares is
    degraded, at best. However, the presence of the Type II radio sweep
    combined with SDO/AIA 304 imagery indicated there was likely a CME
    associated with the X2 flare with at least a portion of the plasma cloud
    directed at Earth.

    Solar activity is expected to be at low levels with M-class
    (R1-R2/Minor-Moderate) flare activity ...

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