Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Largest Cycle 24 Sunspot Group Yet

Sunspot group 1025 has appeared on the sun. It is 7 times the diameter of Earth, and definitely part of Cycle 24. Best yet, it is very active, with well-developed plage and strongly contorted magnetic lines.

Daily radio flux has jumped to 82, with the latest K index remaining low at 1. These are numbers which can definitely improve HF propagation.

Unfortunately, a C-class flare in this region has caused a coronal mass ejection aimed in the general direction of the Earth. It will arrive in about a day and a half, probably while we still have a southward interplanetary magnetic field (Bz). It is likely to cause beautiful auroras, and not-so-beautiful degradation of high-latitude and transpolar paths.

Plenty of data on both events is at