Thursday, March 24, 2011

Sun-Earth Art Inspired by SDO

Students at St Cronans National School were asked to draw pictures of the Sun to celebrate Sun-Earth Day 2011. They were allowed to look at SDO images for their inspiration. From the 49 pictures the top three are shown here. The First Place drawing was inspired by the composite image from the SDO First Light.

Second place was inspired by the solar flare at disk center on Valentine's Day.

The image selected for third place was inspired by coronal loops seen against the limb of the Sun.

All the drawings were done using soft pastels on black paper during a special workshop at the school on March 15th. A pack of NASA solar educational materials, DVD's Posters, etc., was given to each student.

You can read about the contest at the teacher's blog

Congratulations to the class for safe solar viewing and thanks for the pictures!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

SDO EVE Calibration Rocket Launched

The SDO EVE calibration rocket flight today was very successful. We launched on time (11:50 MDT, 17:50 UT) and all the rocket and flight SDO quick-look data look excellent. Thanks for all those at WSMR, NASA, NSROC, and LASP for supporting this successful mission !

Congratulation to Tom and the EVE Science Team for a successful launch!

SDO/EVE Rocket Update

The Wed March 23 launch window is 11:50 AM - 12:20 AM MDT (17:50 - 18:20 UT)

Mar 23, 9:00 AM MDT: Experiment sections are ready for flight. Final arming of the launch vehicles have begun. Weather report is still Green for launch.
Mar 23, 8:10 AM MDT: Horizontal test completed. Starting preparations for flight.
Mar 23, 7:30 AM MDT: CCDs are down to -40 C. Getting ready for Horizontal (turn-on) test at 7:50 AM.
Mar 23, 6:30 AM MDT: Instrument CCDs are cooled down to -20 C. Plan is to be at -65 C for launch time.
Mar 23, 4:30 AM MDT: Andrew on-station and cooling of CCDs have started. Payload pressure is 0.12 milliTorr at start of cool down (Pump IG pressure of 1.3 microTorr). Weather looking great for launch today: 61 F, sunny, low winds forecasted for launch time.

Follow updates as they come in at:

Monday, March 21, 2011

EVE Sounding Rocket Launch Update

Update on EVE sounding rocket from Tom Woods:

Based on continued unacceptable (red) wind conditions for Tuesday March 22 and very good weather conditions forecasted for Wednesday, the launch for NASA 36.275 is now scheduled for Wednesday March 23. That is, we have scrubbed plans to attempt launch on Tuesday.

The Wed March 23 launch window is the same as previously planned:
11:50 AM - 12:20 AM MDT (17:50 - 18:20 UT)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

SDO EVE Calibration Rocket Scheduled for Next Week

There are 3 launch dates reserved next week for the SDO EVE Calibration Rocket (NASA 36.275). The weather forecasts are for unacceptably high winds on Monday March 21, but acceptable winds on Tue March 22 and Wed March 23. We plan to decide tomorrow (Thur 3/17) on whether we’ll give up the range for March 21 and only try for launches on Tuesday or Wednesday.

The launch window is 11:50 AM - 12:20 AM MDT (17:50 - 18:20 UT) for all three days.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Spring 2011 Eclipse Season Has Begun

The spring 2011 eclipse season has begun. Every day until April 2, 2011 there will be a short break in the data flow as the Earth moves between SDO and the Sun. The length of an eclipse can be as long as 72 minutes and they happen at about midnight at our ground station in Las Cruces, NM (0700 UT).

The EVE calibration rocket flight from WSMR is scheduled for 3/22 between 1800-1830 UTC.

Monday, March 7, 2011

EVE observes the recent flare activity

The Sunspot Number is 122 (at the time of this post) and there have been several M-class flares and an elevated chance of X-class flares. This plot from SDO's EVE investigation shows the increase in flare activity observed by EVE's EUV SpectroPhotometer (ESP).

See the most recent EVE 3-day plot and more.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Friday, March 4, 2011

AIA Images Unavailable This Weekend

The AIA NRT data stream from the JSOC-SDP to LMSAL has been shut down. SDO team members are running some tests over the weekend to isolate the problems with the connection between LMSAL and the JSOC/SDP. Most of these should be transparent to the community. However, the NRT data stream generates the data products seen on Suntoday, iSolSearch, Helioviewer, etc. The stream will be off overnight (pacific time) and will resume tomorrow morning.

In addition, The generation of AIA level 1.5 generation has also been stopped to help alleviate a data generation volume problem at the JSOC. The AIA synoptic images at are still available.

SDO Lunar Transit - 2011-03-04

SDO will observe a lunar transit today.
Here is a video illustrating the transit.