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Why so many limb eruptions?????


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Just a curious space weather hobbyist here, is there any relation between sunspots being on the farside/limb and flares? Recently it would seem that's all that keeps happening. I figured it is most likely a coincidence, but what are yall's thoughts on it?

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20 minutes ago, AurorahunterPA said:

Just a curious space weather hobbyist here, is there any relation between sunspots being on the farside/limb and flares? Recently it would seem that's all that keeps happening. I figured it is most likely a coincidence, but what are yall's thoughts on it?

@Marcel de Bontjust wrote this yesterday in response to a question exactly like yours, I’ll repost his answer here:

“I think it's just our imagination. Same with limb events. Yes we are getting more limb events than earth-facing events but that makes sense. Regions spend a considerable amount of time just behind the limb at the limb or just passed the limb (not to mention we have an east and west limb!) and the real earth-strike zone is maybe 60 degrees (30 degrees west and east of the central meridian) out of the 360 degrees that is the entire Sun. I hope it makes sense and I don't confuse anyone.

There shouldn't be any difference between earth-size and far side activity and if there is I am sure there is a Nobel Prize waiting for someone down the future.”

To make a long story short, the Earth strike zone is really pretty small, most activity will not be in it. 

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5 minutes ago, Orneno said:

@Marcel de Bontjust wrote this yesterday in response to a question exactly like yours, I’ll repost his answer here:

“I think it's just our imagination. Same with limb events. Yes we are getting more limb events than earth-facing events but that makes sense. Regions spend a considerable amount of time just behind the limb at the limb or just passed the limb (not to mention we have an east and west limb!) and the real earth-strike zone is maybe 60 degrees (30 degrees west and east of the central meridian) out of the 360 degrees that is the entire Sun. I hope it makes sense and I don't confuse anyone.

There shouldn't be any difference between earth-size and far side activity and if there is I am sure there is a Nobel Prize waiting for someone down the future.”

To make a long story short, the Earth strike zone is really pretty small, most activity will not be in it. 

Thank you for the straightforward answer. I thought it was probably something like that but wasn't quite sure.

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I have been noticing this limb flare phenomena too! I was eager to read the replies on this post after I saw the topic broached. I wanted to ask if anyone else noticed that all the largest flares seem to be facing larger planet conjunctions in our solar system, especially Jupiter Neptune and Venus right now. All the major planets seem to all be clustered on one side of the sun relative to our view. 

I understand that an “earth-facing” flare probability is still only around 17% (60/360), the question is why do the sunspots seem to erupt more consistently in the particular directions they have been relative to our position in the solar system? 

I know planetary alignment theories are not popular on this forum but I’d appreciate some thoughts on this fairly consistent pattern anyhow!

https://www.theplanetstoday.com/geocentric_orrery.html

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Hello all

Indeed, the 60° of this "Earth-directed" angle still looks promising, but remember: the Sun does not always "spit" the CME
perpendicular to its surface, there have been many 45° upward or downward pointing CMEs in the past that were visible
from limb to limb and would have barely reached the Earth, if at all! So if you take this 17% chance and divide it by 3
(45°up, in a line and 45°down) then you get only about 6% of all good CMEs which could reach the earth.

And even then, there's a chance that the Bz will always be north after that. So you won't get much of a show then....


 

Regards, Chris

Edited by Chris, HB9DFG
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Thank you for both for your responses! I guess my particular question was a little different than the original topic, but I do see how this explains how we perceive direction of a solar eruption if only less than 3% could ever directly hit us. { Longitude probability(60deg/ 360deg) x 100= 16.66%, and then a third of that is latitudinally equatorward enough to hit us 17%/3 = 5.55% (thanks to Chris, HB9DFG), and then I would guess a half possibility for the Bz to be north or south so we're left with 5.55%/2 = 2.7% total chance for a flare to directly hit us. } Couple that with the CME deflection, mentioned in the article from 3gMike, and we have very low chances of direct hits which makes sense considering our recent lack of activity.

My particular question regards why sun spots erupt in the longitudinal positions that they do erupt relative to us in the solar system, not what are the probabilities a cme's trajectory hitting us, which i know is complicated, slim chances, but related. So to be clear I am wondering why sunspots erupt at the particular longitude they do, not the CME filament..  I figured when we are looking at a solar disk image, we are seeing half of the sun despite only 60/180 = 1/3 being geoeffective, thus we can see, relatively, if a sunspot is erupting on our visible half or not, which should indicate general longitudinal direction of a sunspot.

Thank you for the article on deflection and rotation of CME's, explaining further how cmes are deflected toward heliospheric current sheets and away from coronal holes with a wider range of deflections near solar max. I like how they say "Better understanding of the rotation of CMEs is needed to understand the expected orientation of CMEs upon impact at Earth." which made me think of sunspot position during its carrington rotation rather than the cme rotating from the sunspot.  I did take a gander at the active region 1158 they studied in the article, and noticed it spit out an x flare more or less directly at us in Feb 13, 2011, and there was a larger planet, saturn behind earth in the direction of the x flare directed at us.

The reason why I am  wondering this now is due to the apparent solar farside and limb activity and the fact that all the larger planets are mostly on the same side hemisphere of our solar system from us. This leaves Earth as the sole planet on this side of the solar system and seems like a good time to use as a control to check for influences on sunspot activity. I have been using the planets today  and solar system scope online to view this arrangement.

https://www.theplanetstoday.com/index.html

https://www.solarsystemscope.com/

I have experienced a general lack of enthusiasm for planetary tidal influences on solar magnetism on this forum maybe due to Patrick Geryls hard to understand format and utter enthusiasm. I did however find these articles relatively recently (2019) regarding this topic after it got shuttered here, and assumed they were peer reviewed and accepted so I am confused as to why this is a forbidden topic. It seems to me like the largest masses in the solar system would pucker the space time fabric enough to change the magnetic dynamo of the sun, just as the moon affects ours. Also, it made me realize I don't have to look at planetary alignments to see if they are effecting us, I can just look at the sun's activity instead to see if a planetary alignment is influential.

Here is easy to read review of the article:

https://eos.org/articles/planetary-low-tide-may-force-regular-sunspot-sync-ups

 

Here is the actual scientific article:

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11207-019-1447-1

https://arxiv.org/pdf/1803.08692.pdf

 

Using solar system scope, linked above, it is super fun and easy to spin jupiter around the sun and fly through all the solar cycles to visually test this out for yourself. Jupiters orbit is about one solar cycle (11 years), and solar minimums happen within a few years of Jupiter and Venus's alignment according to article due to their mass and proximity. Solar system scope lets you check allllll the solar cycles too! Like back way before christ and further.  

I took a casual gander at some of the top 50 flares and solar radiation storms to hit earth and their general direction and the positions of the planets at that time and have so far found every more or less direct hit to always be associated with a larger planet being behind or on the earths side of the sun, which makes sense around solar maximums. It also makes sense that a cme's deflection would vary more during a solar maximum if jupiter and venus are more likely to be near earth than opposite it from the sun.

I was wondering if the archive here has the longitude of the sunspot recorded for the farside as well as the visible side to compare sunspot activity with planetary positions.

 

Thank you for entertaining my thoughts and putting up with this unpopular topic in essay format! Wish I could make this more concise to make easier to respond to. I bolded the important part. I am new to this forum and space weather in general and get stuck on seemingly simpler answers that go undiscussed. Thanks again everyone for taking the time to respond to the confused newb!

 

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I have also been investigating possible influences on where sunspots are generated / are active. I was intending to do some further analysis before posting as a new topic, but given your interest I will post this histogram showing the frequency of sunspots occurring at any longitude during this cycle. It seems that there are a few 'preferred' longitudes, but bear in mind that this is based on only around 250 ARs that I have recorded during this cycle. I need to check what has happened in previous cycles, but that involves a lot of effort and will not be completed very soon ! For clarification - each bar on the histogram represents the number of ARs identified in any 10 degree band.

Comments welcome!

333797917_SunspotsbyLongitude.jpg.e33bbc6016067224d6750e6506162a64.jpg

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This is brilliant, great work and idea! Thanks for sharing premptively, I appreciate all I just learned a lot about carrington rotation notation conventions!

This should actually be a new topic since you are actually tracking sunspot genesis and longitude rather than just asking about sunspot activity and planetary alignments. I should have started a new topic as well after i realized I was asking a different question.

I was only considering sunspot activity rather than their genesis because that's all I thought we could reliably see (CME's) or keep track of on the earth facing side. I guess theres GONG, SDO seismic maps for farside but I don't know how to reliably track sunspots until they face us and get an active region number and longitude assigned.

Does this graph represent sunspots that newly formed on the farside as well as earth-facing?

I found the solar synoptic maps for the earth facing side on SWPC that has Carrington Longitude Lt and new sunspot region numbers handwritten in at least twice a day! I'm not sure if they wait to name or number a sunspot until it faces earth or what the convention is when a sunspot arises on the backside. Where would they assign carrington longitude for the southern hemisphere?

Super awesome you found so many sunspots landing in one longitude! 340... definitely lots of inquiry as to why that longitude.. only our moon seems to frequent that longitude when earth facing with any regularity from just glancing at it.

 

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12 hours ago, Bry said:

Does this graph represent sunspots that newly formed on the farside as well as earth-facing?

To be clear, the sunspots are only assigned numbers when we detect them on the earth-facing side but since the Carrington longitude is referencing a fixed spot on the sun, even if they were formed on the farside it will still be valid (within a few degrees). We cannot tell reliably what is happening on the farside. So, we definitely know that they formed at that longitude, but if they form on the farside we have no way of knowing exactly when they formed, or how complex they were.

This website http://jsoc.stanford.edu/data/farside/ gives a rough indication of where strong magnetic activity is detected but it is not possible to tell anything about formation of sunspots. However you can see where a given Carrington longitude is located at any time relative to earth facing or farside.

12 hours ago, Bry said:

Where would they assign carrington longitude for the southern hemisphere?

Longitude is valid for both northern and southern hemispheres.

 

12 hours ago, Bry said:

only our moon seems to frequent that longitude when earth facing with any regularity from just glancing at it.

 

I'm considering how to present time distribution by longitude, but the difficulty is that each division reduces the number of samples available. I already suspect that the plot will be dominated by more recent events, since as the cycle progresses we will be seeing more events.

13 hours ago, Drax Spacex said:

3gMike - You might also plot a northern hemisphere and southern hemisphere version of that graph.  Some have observed that active Carrington longitudes are different for each hemisphere.

Yes, that should be fairly easy to do. I think I may start a new topic when I do that.

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On 5/5/2022 at 9:27 AM, 3gMike said:
  On 5/4/2022 at 7:42 PM, Drax Spacex said:

3gMike - You might also plot a northern hemisphere and southern hemisphere version of that graph.  Some have observed that active Carrington longitudes are different for each hemisphere.

 

On 5/5/2022 at 9:27 AM, 3gMike said:
On 5/4/2022 at 8:34 PM, Bry said:

Where would they assign carrington longitude for the southern hemisphere?

Longitude is valid for both northern and southern hemispheres.

 

On 5/5/2022 at 9:27 AM, 3gMike said:

Yes, that should be fairly easy to do. I think I may start a new topic when I do that.

I guess I'm confused about how carrington longitude is different for the two hemispheres if one longitude is also considered valid.

 

On 5/5/2022 at 9:27 AM, 3gMike said:
On 5/4/2022 at 8:34 PM, Bry said:

only our moon seems to frequent that longitude when earth facing with any regularity from just glancing at it.

 

I'm considering how to present time distribution by longitude, but the difficulty is that each division reduces the number of samples available. I already suspect that the plot will be dominated by more recent events, since as the cycle progresses we will be seeing more events.

Good point, it is tricky to display clustered data distributed over larger time gaps. Im no python expert, but I wonder if plotly would be a good way to present this data over time with a zooming options, kinda like on this website.

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43 minutes ago, Bry said:

I guess I'm confused about how carrington longitude is different for the two hemispheres if one longitude is also considered valid.

I think what Drax Spacex was suggesting was that different carrington longitudes might be more active depending upon which hemisphere is examined. I'll make an effort to generate a new plot to check that theory.

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  • 5 weeks later...
On 5/5/2022 at 3:42 AM, Drax Spacex said:

3gMike - You might also plot a northern hemisphere and southern hemisphere version of that graph.  Some have observed that active Carrington longitudes are different for each hemisphere.

I finally got around to doing that ! In the process I noticed an error that had significantly overstated the frequency of spots at 340 longitude. The two new charts are now verified as correct.

275370117_SunspotGenesis_North.jpg.5847322247ba39d09b718a9bf6cebeff.jpg

694248283_SunspotGenesis_South.jpg.0182f396f60aa61427b07f58a678cd19.jpg

It is worth noting that we have a relatively small number of samples. In order to assess significance we might note that these charts cover 258 sunspots in total - 144 in the south and 114 in the north. Given that we have 36 bins that indicates an average value / bin of 4 for the south and 3.166 for the north.

Edited by 3gMike
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I wonder how the the suns barycenter corresponds to the particular carrington longitude that is most active. It seems like the moon has the most similar frequency whenever 340 longitude faces us. I assume the barycenter of the solar system is one point at one time despite it being depicted as an oscillating ellipse.

“  But zooming in further exposes the influences of the remaining planets on the solar system barycenter: The Earth/Moon system is responsible for the majority of the wobble:”

I can’t paste the image but here is link anarchomoth shared about barycenter

https://homepages.wmich.edu/~korista/solarsystem_barycenter.pdf

Scroll down to check out the moon/earth wobble effects on barycenter in linked article when other planets are not considered!

Awesome work, thanks for sharing and getting this conversation started. I’m  not sure why the hemispheres would have different active longitudes but I guess that’s how the solar dynamo works? I remember seeing a diagonally oriented picture at some point..
 

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4 hours ago, Bry said:

I wonder how the the suns barycenter corresponds to the particular carrington longitude that is most active. It seems like the moon has the most similar frequency whenever 340 longitude faces us. I assume the barycenter of the solar system is one point at one time despite it being depicted as an oscillating ellipse.

“  But zooming in further exposes the influences of the remaining planets on the solar system barycenter: The Earth/Moon system is responsible for the majority of the wobble:”

I can’t paste the image but here is link anarchomoth shared about barycenter

https://homepages.wmich.edu/~korista/solarsystem_barycenter.pdf

Scroll down to check out the moon/earth wobble effects on barycenter in linked article when other planets are not considered!

Awesome work, thanks for sharing and getting this conversation started. I’m  not sure why the hemispheres would have different active longitudes but I guess that’s how the solar dynamo works? I remember seeing a diagonally oriented picture at some point..
 

Hi Bri,

I believe you are kinda correct in that the barycenter is not the oscillating circles as it’s depicted as in here

https://www.quora.com/Does-the-Earth-orbit-the-barycenter-of-the-Sun-and-Earth-or-the-barycenter-of-everything-in-the-solar-system

It would be more accurate to show the sun oscillating around a point which is wobbling through space s the whole system orbits the barycenter of the galaxy - black hole in Sagittarius… Like Copernicus, it’s a heliocentric view, where the sun is depicted as stationary.

Archmonoth posted an interesting correlation between Jupiter being in Sagittarius and the sunspot cycle yesterday. I am gonna start a new thread on the topic of the barycenter, Jupiter & Sunspots, tomorrow. I’ve got it started, I just want to review it again before I start the topic. I do,find it all very interesting…

Also, I wonder if “they” took into the account that the center of mass and center of gravity for the solar system are not the same! (They are only the same in a uniform gravitational field - I am a rocket scientist!)

Anyway, very interesting stuff! Hope to discuss this further tomorrow.

Hope you have a great day/night/whatever it is wherever you are!
 

WW 

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4 hours ago, WildWill said:

Archmonoth posted an interesting correlation between Jupiter being in Sagittarius and the sunspot cycle yesterday. I am gonna start a new thread on the topic of the barycenter, Jupiter & Sunspots, tomorrow. I’ve got it started, I just want to review it again before I start the topic. I do,find it all very interesting…

Awesome idea! Too many good topics to respond to them all or even track who wrote them properly! Especially when I got to work outside I’m the sun and can’t research all day. Hard to get quotes from other topics to relate. Glad to have a rocket scientist chiming in!

I think I proposed the question/idea of Jupiter near Sagittarius to Patrick and anarchmonoth because they were debating the effects of planets on solar activity initially and I wanted to know more! Anarchmonoth shared that planets do have some effect via the center of gravity (barycenter oscillations) of the sun and I thought I’d share my repeated observations of solar minimums corresponding to Jupiter being in the zodiacal longitude near Sagittarius and opposite in Orion during solar minimums.

 

 I then asked if the heliosphere is facing the galactic core as well and anarchmonoth linked the heliosphere wiki page where it suggested it was facing Scorpious constellation, where apparent interstellar winds from our galactic arms rotation through space changes the direction of maximum cosmic radiation off from sagitariua into Scorpio.

This makes it seem like one side of our solar system would have more cosmic radiation than the other as planets pass through the suns magnetic field. 

Glad to get more input from rocket scientists! I’m new to space weather stuff and thought I’d get a firm grip on some basic physical principles first like the direction everything is going.. cosmic radiation, the sun, the suns magnetosphere and how we keep track of longitude in our solar system with constellations as our distant fixed stars.

Speaking of rockets, I saw the craziest double-propellered military aircraft fly over the Loma prieta epicenter ridge where I work today, and then I heard about a similar pair in the news crashing in the desert today.. 

glad to make this into a new topic as many many questions go unanswered or unnoticed!

i love the forecasting suggestion based off a theory with written criteria!

Im expecting some serious action soon in the direction of Jupiter with all those planets lined up on the west, besides the Ceres mercury opposition.  But I literally found an article that said the opposite is true.. planetary alignments during solar minimum suppress sunspot activity... so I guess we wait until August for any significant earth directed action.

Also mercury in retrograde is kinda the same as parahelion or perigree without the apparent movement... it’s funny when I bring up space weather to other people they think I’m talking about astrology not helioscience.. hahaha...Apparently we are now too since we can acknowledge that planets do affect the suns barycenter!

i want to understand why people doubt planetary effects on the sun so much..

I even asked Scott Macintosh (Hale cycle scientist /terminator determiner) his opinion on planetary tidal effects and he said the mechanism did not have enough energy to account for the different solar cycle lengths. I think I found what research he was referencing and they only looked at solar barycenter effect in one dimension and did not account for non planar planetary orbits and definitely not considering changes in direction of overal cosmic radiation from our galactic rotation! 

Edited by Bry
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19 hours ago, WildWill said:

Archmonoth posted an interesting correlation between Jupiter being in Sagittarius and the sunspot cycle yesterday. I am gonna start a new thread on the topic of the barycenter, Jupiter & Sunspots, tomorrow. I’ve got it started, I just want to review it again before I start the topic. I do,find it all very interesting…

I look forward to it, I wrote up a description with some distances/weights and speculation for when you do. I was going to post them, but I'll wait until you make a new thread. 

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14 hours ago, Bry said:

Awesome idea! Too many good topics to respond to them all or even track who wrote them properly! Especially when I got to work outside I’m the sun and can’t research all day. Hard to get quotes from other topics to relate. Glad to have a rocket scientist chiming in!

Thanks! Happy to be here! I became,very interested in the as soon as it was brought up on here. I’ve had quite a day and I still need to take Alex to the dog park - it’s 95*F outside right now with heat index of 105, needless to say, I probably won’t be able to start the thread. The mathematics involved intrigues me! I saw a post from another aerospace engineer who actually said that barycenter is just a fancy name for “center of mass” (bzzz, wrong answer, thank you for playing the game!)

I think I proposed the question/idea of Jupiter near Sagittarius to Patrick and anarchmonoth because they were debating the effects of planets on solar activity initially and I wanted to know more! Anarchmonoth shared that planets do have some effect via the center of gravity (barycenter oscillations) of the sun and I thought I’d share my repeated observations of solar minimums corresponding to Jupiter being in the zodiacal longitude near Sagittarius and opposite in Orion during solar minimums.

 

 I then asked if the heliosphere is facing the galactic core as well and anarchmonoth linked the heliosphere wiki page where it suggested it was facing Scorpious constellation, where apparent interstellar winds from our galactic arms rotation through space changes the direction of maximum cosmic radiation off from sagitariua into Scorpio.

The helio-magnetosphere actually extends beyond the Ort cloud!

This makes it seem like one side of our solar system would have more cosmic radiation than the other as planets pass through the suns magnetic field. 

Glad to get more input from rocket scientists! I’m new to space weather stuff and thought I’d get a firm grip on some basic physical principles first like the direction everything is going.. cosmic radiation, the sun, the suns magnetosphere and how we keep track of longitude in our solar system with constellations as our distant fixed stars.

Speaking of rockets, I saw the craziest double-propellered military aircraft fly over the Loma prieta epicenter ridge where I work today, and then I heard about a similar pair in the news crashing in the desert today.. 

I went down in a helicopter once - wouldn’t recommend it. Most of my Professors wouldn’t fly in a helicopter!

glad to make this into a new topic as many many questions go unanswered or unnoticed!

i love the forecasting suggestion based off a theory with written criteria!

Scientific Method - evaluate your “hypothesis”. I am disappointed that he ignored my observations that the celestial bodies he is using for his predictions do not have magnetic fields. Except Mercury, which is very close and has a very weak magnetic field…

Im expecting some serious action soon in the direction of Jupiter with all those planets lined up on the west, besides the Ceres mercury opposition.  But I literally found an article that said the opposite is true.. planetary alignments during solar minimum suppress sunspot activity... so I guess we wait until August for any significant earth directed action.

During the solar minimum- Jupiter in Orion? That sounds the same to me, in fact - it makes perfect sense to me, more mass on the opposite side of the sun from the galactic core…

Also mercury in retrograde is kinda the same as parahelion or perigree without the apparent movement... it’s funny when I bring up space weather to other people they think I’m talking about astrology not helioscience.. hahaha...Apparently we are now too since we can acknowledge that planets do affect the suns barycenter!

i want to understand why people doubt planetary effects on the sun so much..

I even asked Scott Macintosh (Hale cycle scientist /terminator determiner) his opinion on planetary tidal effects and he said the mechanism did not have enough energy to account for the different solar cycle lengths. I think I found what research he was referencing and they only looked at solar barycenter effect in one dimension and did not account for non planar planetary orbits and definitely not considering changes in direction of overal cosmic radiation from our galactic rotation! 
 

Gotta get ready to take Alex to the dog park, more later/tomorrow…

Have a great night!

WW & ATG

 

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