Solar

NASA | What Are Gamma Rays?

What we call “light” is actually just a tiny fraction of the broad range of radiation on the electromagnetic radiation spectrum. The entire span stretches from very-low-energy radio waves through microwaves, infrared light, visible light, ultraviolet light, X rays, and finally to very-high-energy gamma rays. The processes producing photons (single particles of electromagnetic radiation) of each type of radiation differ,… Read more →

US headed for ‘perfect storm’ in space, Air Force general says

Photo: (PAT CORKERY, UNITED LAUNCH ALLIANCE) COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. –  Shrinking government budgets, combined with a growing reliance on space assets by the United States — especially by its military — are putting the country in an undefended position, Gen. William Shelton, commander of U.S. Air Force Space Command, said Tuesday. Every U.S. military action depends on space capabilities such as… Read more →

Adjust your compass now: the north pole is migrating to Russia

Photo: flickr By Walt Stoneburner It sounds unlikely but it’s true: the magnetic north pole is moving faster than at any time in human history, threatening everything from the safety of modern transport systems to the traditional navigation routes of migrating animals. Scientists say that magnetic north, which for two centuries has been in the icy wilderness of Canada, is currently relocating… Read more →

ScienceCasts: Solar Max Double Peaked

Something unexpected is happening on the sun. 2013 is supposed to be the year of Solar Max, but solar activity is much lower than expected. At least one leading forecaster expects the sun to rebound with a double-peaked maximum later this year.

NASA Sees Monster Sunspot Growing Fast, Solar Storms Possible

Photo Credit: SPACE.com/NASA/SDO/AIA/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center A colossal sunspot on the surface of the sun is large enough to swallow six Earths whole, and could trigger solar flares this week, NASA scientists say. The giant sunspot was captured on camera by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory as it swelled to enormous proportions over the 48 hours spanning Tuesday and Wednesday (Feb. 19 and 20)…. Read more →

NASA | Fiery Looping Rain on the Sun

Eruptive events on the sun can be wildly different. Some come just with a solar flare, some with an additional ejection of solar material called a coronal mass ejection (CME), and some with complex moving structures in association with changes in magnetic field lines that loop up into the sun’s atmosphere, the corona. On July 19, 2012, an eruption occurred… Read more →