March 7, 2013
The Week In Extremes From Space To Earth For March 1-5, 2013
Weather information from the Red Planet comes courtesy of Mars Weather. This website has activity attached to the Mars Rover which is bringing back to Earth real time weather observations from the planet. As a meteorologist, I find it enthusing to be able to see the weather on Mars.
So, for the past week, here are some of the extremes that were recorded on Mars near Gale Crator.
The highest temperature occurred on Solar Day 199 when the daytime high on Mars was 6C. While the coldest night, on Mars was Solar Day 192 when the overnight low temp hit -68C. The highest pressure that the planet saw for the past Earth week was on Solar Day 191, where the pressure has been around 9.2hpa. The past earth week temperatures on Mars have been pretty uniform with high temps during the Mars day hitting 6C and at night dropping into the -66 to -68C range. In the projected Mars forecast for the week, expect to see more high temps in the 4-6C range along with low temps in the -65-68C range.
Next stop, takes us the Sun. This information is according to Space Weather. As of March 5, the sun was very active with a CME explosion recorded on the sun’s surface. Also, a solar flare was released from one of the sunspots that is currently active on the sun. The latest recorded solar wind has it moving away from the sun at a speed of 330.8km/second. Another major event that we are preparing for here on earth is the Solar Max of 2013 that is forecasted to occur this spring or early summer. This will have impacts on our Earth’s weather as we will enter into a colder phase on earth. All of those record setting days may come to an end once the solar max is reached. Current sunspot activity includes the following active sunspots (1682/1683/1684/1685/1686/1687/1688/1689). This lines up well with indications of a very active sun period as we march towards that solar max. This brings the total for this solar cycle to 103 sunspots.
Now on to the Earth’s Magnetic Field. Here we are watching the impacts of all the sun activity which could lead to a higher chance of seeing Geomagnetic Storms ranging from Active too Severe. The Mid-latitudes have a 25% chance of seeing an Active storm, while the higher latitudes around the poles have a 30% chance of seeing a severe storm.
Looking at the stratosphere, we are not seeing any major developments at this time in this layer of the earth, as we watch for projected outbreaks of extreme cold weather. Note for thought: when the stratosphere warms rapidly, this in return forces the earth’s surface to cool, just like the event we saw in January over the United States.
Extreme Weather Events from the Earth’s Atmosphere courtesy of www.coolwx.com .
The coldest spot over the past three days comes to us from Antarctica with an air temperature of -54C.
The warmest spot over the past three days comes to us from El Arish, Egypt where the temp hit 45C.
These are just a couple of extreme events from the Earth’s surface over the past few days.
My Space Weather Outlook for the week: The sun will remain very active over the next week with multiple sunspots creating the potential of more solar flares and other solar releases from the sun’s surface. This in return will keep the Earth’s magnetic field very active as well, with the potential of seeing geomagnetic storms. Looking at the weather on Mars for the next week, no major changes are forecasted for the region around Gale Crator.
Image Credit: Photos.com