SDO | News & Resources

SDO Mission Blog

This is the Solar Dynamics Observatory Mission blog. It will consist of mission status, news, and event updates.

Power is out at the Stanford data site due to the current atmospheric river. Power is being restored to the university and the JSOC should be back in operations soon. The data is stored at the SDO ground station and will be available once power is restored.
SDO was launched into orbit 13 years ago yesterday, at 10:23 am ET on 11 Feb 2010. Thirteen years and millions of observations later, SDO is still producing excellent solar data. It is hard to pick out a favorite sequence of SDO data. But the Sun did provide us with a nice filament eruption a few days ago as an early anniversary present. If you look in the northern polar regions of this combined AIA 211 Å (red), 193 Å (green), and 171 Å (blue) video, you can see the dark filament rising up and breaking apart. It appears to include one of the magnetic vortices we saw in the last Solar Cycle.

These polar filaments are a key part of removing the previous cycle's magnetic field from the poles of the Sun. As Solar Cycle 25 field erupts near the equator, some of it moves towards the poles where it meets the last remaining magnetic field of Solar Cycle 24. The fields tend to have opposite directions and they form a filament where they meet. This filament will circle the pole. Some of the oddity in this movie is seeing the plasma move around the pole in both directions.

The Sun will continue to surprise us, in SDO's 13th year and probably for many years to come.

I would like to thank the people who built and launched SDO, it has been an amazing observatory. I congratulate the people who run SDO on keeping this fantastic tool on station and performing great!

SDO is GO!

SDO executed the EVE FOV and HMI/AIA Flatfield instrument calibration maneuvers yesterday, 04 Jan 2023, at 1415 UTC (9:15 am ET) and 1730 UTC (12:30 pm ET), respectively. During these maneuvers, at 1617 UTC (11:17 am ET) the Earth reached perihelion, the point in its orbit when it is closest to the Sun. Here is a picture comparing AIA 1600 images at 1649 UTC (10:49 am ET, right) and 04 Jul 2022, 0711 UTC (03:11 am ET, during DST, on left) when the Earth is farthest from the Sun.

The blues lines are drawn to touch the poles of the Sun in the image from last July. You can see that the Sun appears to be a bit larger near perihelion than at apohelion. The SDO telescopes cannot change the size of their images and HMI in particular had to allow for this change in apparent size when designing the optics.

Happy Perihelion 2023!

We apologize for the lack of SDO data over the long weekend. A major software update was done last week and the system was released to production too early. The issues are being fixed, partial connectivity has been restored, and full service should be restored soon.
Today SDO will execute the EVE Field of View (at 1315 UTC, 9:15 am ET) and the HMI/AIA Flatfield (at 1630 UTC, 12:30 pm ET) calibration maneuvers. During these maneuvers SDO science data may be missing or blurred.
Although a comet hasn't been seen in the SDO field of view since 2012, we are always waiting for the next comet to appear. Today we will run our comet off-point test to make sure we are ready for the rapid response that is necessary. Starting at 1800 UTC (2:00 pm ET) SDO will point up and to the left of the Sun's center for 15 minutes. We will then return to solar-center pointing and hold in inertial mode for 15 minutes, allowing the attitude control engineers to run further tests. By 1850 UTC (2:50 pm ET) SDO will return to normal science mode.

This test assures that the SDO Team will be able to point SDO at an incoming comet with a 24-48 hour notice from the Sungrazer Comet Watchers.

Major Outage -- The fiber optic link between White Sands Ground Station and the JSOC in California is down. Repairs are underway.

Time Down: 08/03/2022 14:57 CT (08/03/2022 19:57 GMT)
Time Reported: 08/03/2022 15:10 CT (08/03/2022 20:10 GMT)

Reason for outage:
WSC/STA Links 1000/1001 down 03/1957:08Z. Carrier notified and they are experiencing an outage on an OC-192 between Sacramento and Burbank, Ca. The technicians in Sacramento have identified/found a bad timing and control module with no spares in inventory. They will ordered one from the vendor and expect it's arrival sometime today. (SR)

Outage Impact: SDO data

Here are the highlights of the SDO FDS Quarterly (Long Set) Predicts:
  • 2022/206 @ 0716 UTC (07/25 @ 03:16 am ET) - July-August 2022 Eclipse Season Starts
  • 2022/208 @ 2240 UTC (07/27 @ 6:40 pm ET) - Station Keeping Manuever #25
  • 2022/231 @ 0709 UTC (08/19 @ 3:09 am ET) - Eclipse Season Ends
  • 2022/310 @ 2:00 am ET (11/06) - Daylight Savings Time Ends - GSFC Local Time now UTC -5:00
  • 2022/341 @ TBD (12/07 @ TBD) - Momemtum Management Maneuver #45 (Tentative Date)
  • 2023/020 @ 0722 UTC (01/20/2023 @ 2:22 am ET) - January-February 2023 Eclipse Season Starts
  • 2023/021 @ 0440 UTC (01/20/2023 @ 11:40 am ET) - Handover Season Starts with First Handover
  • 2023/032 @ TBD (02/01/2023 @ TBD) - Station Keeping Maneuver #26 (Tentative Date)
  • 2023/044 @ 0722 UTC (02/13/2023 @ 2:22 am ET) - Eclipse Season Ends
SDO will execute Station Keeping maneuver #25 today from 2220-2300 UTC (6:20-7:00 pm ET). During a maneuver SDO science data may be missing or blurred. These maneuvers are needed to maintain SDO's assigned position as it passes through the geostationary orbit belt.
The July 2022 Instrument Calibration maneuvers are starting. During an instrument calibration maneuver SDO science data may be missing, blurry, or misaligned.
  • 06 Jul 2022: EVE FOV and HMI/AIA Flatfield Calibrations (EVE FOV @ 1315 UTC (9:15-11:50 am ET); HMI/AIA Flatfield @ 1630-1910 UTC (12:30-3:10 pm ET))
  • 20 Jul 2022: EVE Cruciform, 1400–1852 UTC (10:00 am - 2:52 pm ET)
The next HMI Roll maneuver has not yet been scheduled.