Space Weather

About the Mauna Loa Solar Observatory

The Mauna Loa Solar Observatory (MLSO) occupies part of the NOAA Mauna Loa research site located on the flank of Mauna Loa at an elevation of 3440 meters on the island of Hawaii. It is operated by the High Altitude Observatory, a division of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, which is located in Boulder, Colorado.

The Multiscale Atmosphere-Geospace Environment (MAGE) model

Center for Geospace Storms: Transforming the understanding and predictability of space weather. Image: APL

NCAR is a leading partner in the development of a model simulation that will transform scientists’ ability to model the impacts of space weather storms, which can disrupt radio communications, damage satellites, endanger astronauts, and down electrical grids.

2022 UCAR/NCAR Summer Programs: Space Weather & Heliophysics

A giant solar flare erupting from the sun

Join us for two excellent opportunities to broaden and deepen your understanding of Space Weather and Heliophysics, and to connect with the broader space physics community—the Boulder Space Weather Summer School and the Heliophysics Summer School.

Measuring the magnetic origins of solar flares, CMEs and Space Weather

A UV spectrum of α Cen A
Wednesday, April 21, 2021

We take a broad look at the problem of identifying the magnetic solar causes of space weather.

Deciphering Deep-Origin of Active Regions From Analysis Of Magnetograms

Graphic image of active-regions' toroid patterns
Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Dikpati, et. al., derive magnetic toroids from surface magnetograms by employing a novel optimization method based on Trust Region Reflective algorithm. Toroids obtained are combinations of Fourier modes (amplitudes and phases) with low longitudinal wavenumbers.

Data-Driven Ensemble Modeling of Equatorial Ionospheric Electrodynamics

Graphic depicting root-mean-square difference of the plasma drift
Thursday, February 4, 2021

A Case Study During a Minor Storm Period Under Solar Minimum Conditions: The dayside equatorial ionospheric electrodynamics exhibits strong variability driven simultaneously by highly changeable external forcings that originate from the Sun, magnetosphere, and lower atmosphere.


The COSMOS observatory

The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) has received funding approval to survey prospective locations for the Coronal Solar Magnetism Observatory (COSMO).


Photographic image of Stan Solomon

Stan Solomon presented a NCAR Explorer Series lecture about how the aurora is formed and varies with the solar wind driver. In this public outreach lecture Stan delves into the physics and chemistry of the ionosphere.

Responses of the Thermosphere and Ionosphere System to Concurrent Solar Flares and Geomagnetic Storms

Graphic depicting simulated vertical E x B drift velocity
Wednesday, July 1, 2020

We conducted numerical simulations to examine dayside thermosphere and ionosphere responses to concurrent solar flares and a geomagnetic storm during September 6th – September 11th, 2017, as well as the interplay of flare and storm effects.

Partnership Continues with NASA's PSP and MLSO–WHPI

Graphic image of NASA's Parker Solar Probe

Beginning in January 2021, there are new plans underway for continued coordinated efforts between NASA's PSP seventh perihelion and the WHPI campaign.


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