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Solar wind near 1000 kilometers per second?!


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Is there any historical record of the peak solar winds? I imagine that it’s pretty rare that we have reached nearly 1000kps. That speed is almost impossible to wrap my head around. Made me wonder how often it has occurred, and the top speed ever recorded. Thank you.

Edited by David Silver
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We have 6 days in the archive with a solar wind speed above 1000km/sec.

Big and fast CME’s can have a big speed on arrival. For example with the Halloween storms ACE had an outage with bad data. Analysis of the SWEPAM instrument indicated a shock arrival speed of 2000km/sec! It was one of the fastest CME’s.

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I do not remember where I read this but I do remember that the Faraday cup on DSCOVR is rated for speeds up to 1340km/s. Higher speeds than that might not be registered or become faulty. I have no idea what will happen. Hope to find out one day! 😁

But yeah, look up the video about the Halloween Solar Storms of 2003 on YouTube, we go over the solar wind data of that event in the video. Here is a file I still have on my computer of that event and was used in the video. Must have taken it from a scientific paper somewhere.

2000KMS.jpg

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1 hour ago, David Silver said:

Oh my lord, 2000 kps, that is truly astounding. I wonder what the Carrington event wind was.

If the solar flare that Carrington recorded was responsible for the CME and resulting impact on earth, it took 17.6 hours for the CME to reach Earth, 150 million km away.  That would mean an average of 2,300+ km/s.  

These are rough calculations based on the wikipedia article, I'm not an expert, mileage may vary, etc etc.  

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  • 2 weeks later...

Reviewing the SDO imagery through the convenient movie viewer at https://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/data/aiahmi/ - I believe a coronal hole near to 3664, down and left to our perspective but relatively SE on the disk, interacted with the massive region and had an enhancement of wind as it appears to close up. This would have been due to the boundaries experiencing more push-pull than the hole itself, since remember, these are high-speed regions that go on to form the Parker Spiral and HSS, themselves comprising the IMF. The tightening gap would funnel the wind further, and we'd experience it as the area itself rotates away rather than when it's directly Earth-facing.

A lot to say, but in review of the previous conditions vs. now, as it is concurrently quite calm, there is another large region with a neighboring CH coming around now. In approximately 4-5 days, the wind will pick up again, but likely nothing compared to this solar wind enhancement event. Is there a criteria or nomenclature for such a thing?

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