Friday, January 4, 2013

Daily telecon Jan 4th, 2013

Hello all, 

It looks like yet another quiet space weather day, but there is promise that this might change. 

Payloads up as of 8:18 PST Jan 4th 2013: 
SANAE: 1J - on Dartmouth Soc
Halley Bay: 1B - on UCSC Soc  

Payloads launching NOW:
Halley Bay:1D - on UCSC soc 

Payloads ready for flight:
SANAE: Possible launch of payload 1K on Jan 5th. 1L is also ready to launch and they may try to launch soon after 1K. 1M is being unpacked and assembled. 
Halley Bay: 1I is being tested.

Space Weather from

Solar wind speed is 344.6 km/s
Solar proton density 3.6 cm^(-3)

There has been an increase in visible sunspots and 1640 has started "crackling with low-level C-class solar flares". It has however devolved magnetic signatures which are known to produce x-class flares, so fingers crossed we could have a good CME.  It has now moved into the geo-effective region of the Sun but is at a high latitude so we still only have a 15% chance of activity with a 5% chance of sever activity at high latitudes. 
As I needed to brush up this morning on the classification of flares I thought I'd add this to the daily log. 

"Scientists classify solar flares according to their x-ray brightness in the wavelength range 1 to 8 Angstroms. There are 3 categories: X-class flares are big; they are major events that can trigger planet-wide radio blackouts and long-lasting radiation storms. M-class flares are medium-sized; they can cause brief radio blackouts that affect Earth's polar regions. Minor radiation storms sometimes follow an M-class flare. Compared to X- and M-class events, C-class flares are small with few noticeable consequences here on Earth."


Kp is quiet kp = 0 with a 24 max of kp = 1
Bz = 0.2 nT south
Btotal = 4.5 nT 

There are two coronal holes and Solar wind from them are expected to hit the Earth sometime between Jan 8th and 9th 2013. 

Updates on BARREL data products 

KML files: 
They have been fixed, but not completely updated to also show time when you click on a point. It was suggested to me that perhaps people might be interested in having some of the data at those locations also in the description. It would be easy to include the location. Everything else could also be included but would take some time to add. If this is something you think might be of interest let me know, otherwise I will leave them as they are. The files have been uploaded to drop box and can also be found here

Up to the min. maps can be viewed on the soc as well and I've attached a map of the entire balloon flight paths from here as well. 

CDF Level 1 files:
   The CDF generator had a bug that screwed up the epoch timing variable.  Warren finally had time to figure out what the problem was, and fixed it. "However, my rabbit ate the power cord to my workstation laptop and I didn't get a chance to test the code." The daily CDF files will likely start coming out either today or tomorrow. 

CDF Level 2 files:
   These will hopefully be available sometime after January 16th. They will include a conjunction flag which at the moment is being hammered out. 

Improved Archive viewer:
   Warren is working on adding a zoom feature to the Archive Viewer. This will let people get down to as small of a time scale as they want. In the mean time, if there is a bit that anyone would like to see zoomed in on, let us know and we'll try to get that to you as soon as possible. 

As congratulations on making it to the end of this long e-mail, here is an interesting fact. As of today, there are 1363 potentially hazardous astroids known. These astroids are larger than 150 m in diameter and will have their closest approach within 0.05 AU ( ~1173 RE or ~20 times farther away than the moon). 

Talk to you all soon