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Automated SWAP Carrington Rotation Movies Online

Mini Carrington Rotation ImageThe PROBA2 team is proud to present fully automated updated Carrington rotation movies. A Carrington Rotation is a period of time chosen to represent one rotation of the Sun, allowing the comparison of features such as sunspot groups or active regions (a description of active regions can be found here). A period of 27.28 days was chosen to represent a single rotation that largely resembles the recurrence time of features near the equator.
 
The rotation period was initially conceived by Richard Carrington, when he determined the rotation rate of low latitude sunspots. Carrington determined a rotation rate of 25.38 days relative to background stars (sidereal rotation period). However, due to the Earths orbit, this is perceived as 27.28 days from the Earth. Each rotation of the Sun is assigned a Carrington Rotation Number, starting from 09-Nov-1853. That number has now reached 2194 at time of writing (13-Jun-2017); More information can be found here.

Each movie has a cadence of roughly 40 minutes, and each image is comprised of a median stacked set of smoothed SWAP images. By managing the images in this we're able to enhance the signal in the solar corona. The solar corona (the outer solar atmosphere) is seen as the ethereal region of the image surrounding the solar disk. During periods of high acitivty this region can be extremely dynamic showing complicated magnetic structures, as can be seen in the image below.

Carrington Rotation 2169 - Day 1

Figure 1. from the start of Carrington Rotation 2169 (See a movie of Carrington rotation 2169 here).

The current Carrington rotation movie is generated/updated each day around 04:45 AM Belgian time with the latest images from the past day, and can be found here. Throughout the period of the Carrington rotation the length of the movie will be increased, and at the end of the rotation the movie is archived here. At the beginning of a solar cycle don't be surprised if the movie is extremely short. The latest movie can always be found from our link on the front page, and seen in Movie 1 below, which is linked to the latest movie. 

It should be noted that special campaigns performed with the PROBA2 mission and/or SWAP imager onboard may result in some images being generated that are not suitable for the median stacking technique used to generate our Carrington rotation movies, and therefore, on such (rare) occaisions some movies may have a lower cadence than expected. Special campaigns performed with the PROBA2 mission can be searched for here.  

Movie 1. Latest Carrington Rotation Movie

Finally, so people can use the data for searching for interesting events, or creating their own movies, the FITs (raw image) files can be found here. If higher cadence images are required feel free to contact the PROBA2 team at swap_lyra [@] oma.be.