Archive for category Helioviewer.org

Normal Helioviewer services now resumed

Full Helioviewer Project services originating at NASA – helioviewer.org, JHelioviewer and the Helioviewer API – are now back up and running. Over the next couple of days we will be backfilling in missing data from the period October 1 – 17, 2013. Thanks to our colleagues at the Space Influences Data Center (SIDC) at the Royal Observatory of Belgium for providing Helioviewer services in that period.

JHelioviewer users who edited their user profile files to use the ROB server can switch back to using Helioviewer services at NASA by removing the edits

We thank you for your patience over the past couple of weeks.

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NEW: Solar features and events from the Heliophysics Event Knowledgebase

The Sun has many different features and events of great scientific interest. It’s useful to be able to catalog those features and measure their properties. By doing so, we can build up more knowledge about the Sun.

The Heliophysics Event Knowledgebase (HEK) is one such catalog. The HEK collects and stores information about many different types of solar feature – active regions, flares, etc, from many different sources around the world. Each solar feature and event can be detected in different ways. Some features and events are detected by people looking at the data, and some are detected by specialized computer vision algorithms.

We’ve taken the information in the HEK and designed a simple interface to allow you to find out what features and events occurred on the Sun at any given time. We’ve organized the information in the HEK by feature/event. You may need to reload helioviewer.org to get the latest version which includes the HEK.

HV intro: Screenshot from 2013-07-16 10:18:37

The numbers at the end of each line tell you the total number of features/events of each type on the Sun at that time. You can select any combination of features and events you want (green tick marks), or you can select none. If you’ve selected a particular type of feature/event but the text is faded out, this means that there are none of those particular feature/events at the time you’ve requested. If you browse forward and backwards and time and those feature/events are in the HEK, helioviewer.org will display them.

We then break down the total number of features/events by feature recognition method. We do this because different feature recognition methods can give different results for the same feature/event type. You can select any combination of the available feature recognition methods, or you can select none. For example, the active regions on the Sun at this time were detected using two different feature recognition methods:

HV Intro: Screenshot from 2013-07-16 10:19:05

The numbers at the end of each line tell you how many active regions were detected by SPoCA (a computer vision algorithm) and the NOAA SWPC Observer (people looking at the data).

Here’s a typical view of some AIA 304 data with the HEK features and events overplotted.

HV Intro: Screenshot from 2013-07-16 10:29:31

Each of the marker pins corresponds to the feature/event detected by a feature recognition method. Clicking on them pulls up much more information on each individual event. Each of the marker pins also has a small label attached to it with an important piece of information concerning that feature/event. We’ve also extended the movie and screenshot capability so that your selected feature/event markers and labels appear in any movies and screenshots you make.

Finally, in the bottom left-hand corner of the viewer window you’ll see a small image of the Earth. This is the size of the Earth on the same scale as the solar and heliospheric images. This also appears in movies and screenshots of the Sun. Full information on using helioviewer.org can be found by clicking the help link at the bottom of the helioviewer.org webpage.

The HEK is the result of much work by many different people around the world. We are happy to be able to present data from this great solar and heliospheric resource in Helioviewer.org.

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Helioviewer Server Technical Difficulties

We are currently experiencing some technical difficulties with our main Helioviewer server. While we work on fixing it, we have moved all helioviewer.org services over to our backup server. All normal helioviewer.org services should be operating nominally. Please contact us if you notice anything amiss with helioviewer.org. JHelioviewer services are currently not operational, but we hope to have these up and running as soon as possible. Near real-time AIA and HMI images should be available as usual; streams of images from SOHO, STEREO and PROBA2 should be back to near real-time within 24 hours.

We apologize for the interruption to Helioviewer services, and we thank you for your patience.

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Helioviewer discussion forum is now online!

Alongside of our coverage of the last Transit of Venus that most of us will get to see (the next one will be in 2117 for those of you who are particularly ambitious!) we are also launching a new online discussion forum: community.helioviewer.org.

Screenshot of community.helioviewer.org

Here, users can share interesting features and events they find and get help identifying solar phenomena. In addition to forums on topics such as “transits and eclipses” to “coronal mass ejections,” we also have other sections including “solar physics” and “heliophysics” for anyone interested in learning more about the science that goes on behind the pretty pictures and movies.

 

Check it out and let us know what you think!

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Server Maintenance: Tuesday, May 29 (14:00-16:00 UT)

Helioviewer.org and JHelioviewer will be unavailable on Tuesday, May 29 from approximately 14:00UT – 16:00UT for planned server maintenance. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

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Helioviewer.org 2.3.0 Released

A new version of Helioviewer.org has been released including better movie customization, support for embedding Helioviewer.org in remote sites, and a number of performance and bug fixes.

Screenshot showing new movie settings added in Helioviewer.org 2.3.0.

Support has been added for embedding Helioviewer.org into third-party websites, and JSONP support makes it easier for new versions of the front-end to be created which interact with the main Helioviewer.org back-end. Similarly, the front-end has been rewritten to allow for easier creation of custom front-end clients without having to re-implement a tiling system, etc.

New configuration options added in Helioviewer.org 2.3.0.

The back-end movie queuing system has been ported from Ruby to PHP to allow for better integration with the rest of the back-end, and the movies table structure has been modified for improved time estimation and similarity searching. Additional options (frame-rate and movie length) are offered to allow users further control over the movies they create and the duration option has been moved to a more obvious location.

Let us know what you think, or if you have any suggestions. Feedback is always welcome.

RELEASE NOTES:

Helioviewer.2.3.0 includes several new features to give users more control over how the site behaves. Let us know what you think, or if you have any suggestions. Feedback is always welcome.

New features:

* JSONP support
* Added option display date from last visit when returning to Helioviewer.org
* Added setting to automatically update images every 5 minutes
* Added support for embedding Helioviewer.org in other websites
* Added support for specifying frame-rate or duration during movie creation
* Added support for PROBA-2 SWAP data
* Created an installer diagnostic script
* Added support for tracking custom events in Google Analytics
* Movie and screenshot selection rectangle preserved during visit
* Data availability information included in getDateSources response

Bug fixes:

* Fixed bug #691356 JPX Summary file does not exist
* Fixed bug #783497 Port Helioqueuer to PHP
* Fixed bug #903360 Error occurs for certain layer orders when attempting to create AIA/LASCO
* Fixed bug #925542 The minimum width of the display window is too big
* Fixed bug #624857 After clicking “clear history” unfinished requests are still processed, and download links displayed
* Fixed bug #885795 Add image attribution to about dialog
* Fixed bug #888269 Attempt to normalize movie frame-rate instead of duration when possible
* Fixed bug #909795 Normalize date strings for API requests
* Fixed bug #909897 Mark movies that have not finished in less than x hours as Error
* Fixed bug #930628 Improve movie creation time estimation
* Fixed bug #942547 Validate value for dsun before attempting to process in front-side
* Fixed bug #609219 API should return an error message when an invalid parameter is specified in a request
* Fixed bug #783481 Report mouse coordinates immediately upon activation
* Fixed bug #787744 Add a checkSettings method to the UserSettings class to verify user settings integrity
* Fixed bug #876707 Included creation_time in FFmpeg metadata for mp4/webm movies
* Fixed bug #789515 Reduce filesize of WebM movies

Library updates:

* Flowplayer (3.2.7 => 3.2.8)
* jQuery (1.7.0 => 1.7.2)
* jQuery UI (1.8.16 => 1.8.18)
* jQuery.JSON (2.2 => 2.3)
* jQuery imgAreaSelect (0.9.5 => 0.9.8)

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User highlight: back-sided eruption appears to cause a front-sided eruption

Helioviewer.org and YouTube user danielchangck found this event:

What happened? Well, there was an eruption on the back side of the Sun, that caused a propagating disturbance in the solar atmosphere. that appears to have triggered a prominence lift-off on the front-side of the Sun. This is a great example of how the high cadence, continuous observations from Solar Dynamics Observatory give us a much better view of how distant parts of the Sun can physically influence each other. We liked this event so much we made and uploaded some movies of our own. The lower cadence of these movies allows you to see the swaying of coronal material in response to the disturbance from the initial eruption.

Thanks to danielchangck for sharing this movie with other users of Helioviewer.org.

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Spotted: another coronal cavity

YouTube and Helioviewer.org user sedge2002 found another coronal cavity. This one was on the Sun late 2011 to early 2012. It appears towards the end of this movie, at around 30-45 degrees clockwise from the north pole of Sun, above the limb:

Thanks to sedge2002 for making this movie and sharing it with other users of Helioviewer.org. As the movie demonstrates, coronal cavities do occur, and so the one you may have earlier in the week, whilst a great example of a coronal cavity, is definitely not unique. What is a coronal cavity? Let Dr. Alex Young of the The Sun Today tell you:

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Server Maintenance: Thursday, March 15 (14:00-16:00 UT)

Helioviewer.org and JHelioviewer will be unavailable on Thursday, March 15 from approximately 14:00UT – 16:00UT for planned server maintenance. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

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Service resumed

We are very pleased to announce that Helioviewer Project services are now back online.

This means that Helioviewer.org, JHelioviewer, and other applications that use Helioviewer Project services are now available and should be working as before. If you encounter any problems with any of our services please let us know. We are currently filling in missing data from 2011/08/05 through to 2011/09/16, and we ask for your patience during the next couple of weeks as we fill in the gaps. If you notice any gaps, please let us know, as we are eager to have as complete a record of solar activity as possible.

We do apologize for the interruption in service. This was caused by two distinct and unfortunately simultaneous hardware malfunctions on our server that took a long time to repair. We are looking exploring options that will ensure such a long break in service does not happen again. We are back now, and we hope you continue to explore your heliosphere!

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User highlight: active region appearing on the Sun’s limb

YouTube and helioviewer.org user galaxy387 shared this movie of an active region appearing on the limb of the Sun.

It’s a great example of the complex evolution that an active can undergo in a relatively short amount of time. Studying the evolution of active region loops on the limb cuts right through the loops themselves so you don’t see any of the disk emission along your line of sight, and so removes a potential source of confusion.

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2011/06/27 – AIA data availability problems

We apologize for the lack of new images from AIA. This is due to issues outwith our control. We create the images you see from AIA level 1.5 data products (the number refers to the degree of image calibration, etc., that has been applied to the raw data) that are processed at SDO Joint Science Operations Center. As you can see, those data appear to be lagging at the moment. As soon as the data returns, Helioviewer will automatically generate images and make them available.

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User highlight: contracting loops?

Helioviewer and YouTube user otraLoly spotted this interesting active region earlier on today.

Right at the very start you can see that loops on the southern side of the active region appear to contract (a CME and a prominence eruption are occuring). As the event progresses, you’ll notice that two dark areas appear in the coronal moss, outlined by some very bright, and small scale emission, which end up as loop footpoints to the subsequent loop brightening that occurs. This event is interesting for the detail it is possible to see in AIA, particularly in the brightening of the loop footpoints before the main bright loop occurs. Thanks to user otraLoly for sharing this video with users of helioviewer.org!

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Want to know more about the Helioviewer Project?

Helioviewer Logo
Dan Pendick recently posted an excellent series of articles about the Helioviewer Project on his blog, Geeked on Goddard. In five short articles Dan describes many of the different parts of the project, including Helioviewer.org and JHelioviewer. He also discusses some of the technologies that have made all of this possible. If you are interested in learning more about the project and how it all works, you should definitely check out the articles. Also, if you are a science/tech enthusiast I would highly recommend subscribing to Dan’s blog where you can learn more about some of the other cool projects that call the NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center their home.

Topics covered:

Post 1 of 5: Explore the sun on your desktop with Helioviewer
Post 2 of 5: Getting Started with Helioviewer.org
Post 3 of 5: Explore the sun in depth with JHelioviewer
Post 4 of 5: How it works: building the Helioviewer “back end” with JPEG2000
Post 5 of 5: Helioviewer’s future: an Internet for solar image data

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High quality STEREO images now available

We are pleased to announce that the most recent, high quality STEREO images are now available on helioviewer.org.

The STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory) mission is very different from the other missions (Solar Dynamics Observatory and SOHO) we feature on helioviewer.org.

First off, there are two spacecraft, called STEREO-A and STEREO-B. Both spacecraft orbit the Sun at roughly 1 AU (astronomical unit), or about as far away from Sun as the Earth is. However, STEREO-A is moving ahead of the Earth in its orbit, and STEREO-B is drifting behind the Earth in its orbit. This means that each STEREO spacecraft sees different parts of the Sun, parts that we can’t see from Earth. STEREO-B sees features on the Sun that we eventually see in SDO and SOHO, and STEREO-A allows us to see the continuing evolution of features that we did see in SDO and SOHO.

This plot shows where each spacecraft is now:

As you can see, they are quite far away from the Earth. This puts some operational constraints on each spacecraft that means we get high-quality images two days after they were taken. These are the data we are making available today; images from June 1st 2011, up to the most recently available data will be available initially. We ask for your patience, as we are uploading these images right now. Over the course of the next few weeks we will be making images from earlier in the mission available so that you can explore the Sun from many different angles over the past 4 1/2 years.

The benefit of seeing the Sun from many different angles is apparent when you look at the following three videos of the prominence eruption of June 7, 2011. The first one consists of images from SDO-AIA and SOHO-LASCO

We hope you enjoy these new images! As ever, please let us know if you spot any problems.

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