Space Weather

Space Weather

Space weather describes changing environmental conditions in near-Earth space. Magnetic fields, radiation, particles and matter, which have been ejected from the Sun, can interact with the Earth’s upper atmosphere and surrounding magnetic field to produce a  variety of effects.

Image courtesy of NASA/SDO and the AIA, EVE, and HMI science teams

Space weather notifications

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Aurora forecasts

Northern Hemisphere

The auroral oval is curently weak and close to background levels. Very minor geomagnetic enhancements are possible on 05 or 06 July.

Southern Hemisphere

The auroral oval is curently weak and close to background levels. Very minor geomagnetic enhancements are possible on 05 or 06 July.

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Forecast overview

Space Weather Forecast Headline: Slight Chance of Minor Geomagnetic Storm on Days 2 and 3 (05 and 06 July).

Analysis of Space Weather Activity over past 24 hours

Solar Activity: Solar activity was very low over the past 24 hours, with no X-ray flares observed, and no sunspots on the visible side of the Sun. A fragmented series of prominences in the northeastern quadrant looks to have partially lifted off earlier today, but there is no evidence of a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) in satellite imagery. No Earth-directed CMEs were observed in available satellite imagery, and there are thought to be none en-route. 

Solar Wind / Geomagnetic Activity: The solar wind speed was slow throughout, varying between 290-330 km/s. The magnetic field associated with the solar wind was weak, with the important north-south component only varying weakly. Geomagnetic activity has therefore been Quiet (Kp 0-2) throughout.

Energetic Particles / Solar Radiation: No solar radiation storms were observed.

Four-Day Space Weather Forecast Summary

Solar Activity: Solar activity is expected to remain very low, with no active sunspot regions currently on the visible disc. In addition, no returning sunspot regions are forecast to rotate round from the far side during this period. 

Solar Wind / Geomagnetic Activity: There are currently no Earth-directed CMEs in the forecast. The solar wind speed is expected to remain slow on Day 1 (04 July), before the fast wind from a coronal hole is most likely to affect Earth either later on Day 2 (05 July) or early on Day 3 (06 July). There is some doubt on the timing of this feature, but it may bring elevated wind speeds with a chance of Active (Kp4) intervals and a slight chance of a Minor Storm (G1/Kp5) at the onset of the fast wind. Conditions are likely to return to background on Day 4 (07 July).

Energetic Particles / Solar Radiation: No solar radiation storms are expected.

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Solar imagery

SDO AIA-193

This channel highlights the outer atmosphere of the Sun - called the corona - as well as hot flare plasma. Hot active regions, solar flares, and coronal mass ejections will appear bright here. The dark areas - called coronal holes - are places where very little radiation is emitted, yet are the main source of solar wind particles.

SDO AIA-304

This channel is especially good at showing areas where cooler dense plumes of plasma (filaments and prominences) are located above the visible surface of the Sun. Many of these features either can't be seen or appear as dark lines in the other channels. The bright areas show places where the plasma has a high density.

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