Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Thursday, 25 December 2014 00:00 UTC

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

2014 was a year to remember. Solar activity rose to a maximum with more than 1900 solar flares (above C1) and the appearance of some very large sunspot regions, including the largest sunspot region in 24 years! We were however very unlucky as most of the coronal mass ejections were not directed towards earth and caused only geomagnetic storms up to the G2 moderate geomagnetic storm level according to the official and finalized Potsdam K-indices. It’s hard to believe that a very active year in terms of solar activity leads up to very little geomagnetic storming. In fact, this year we saw less activity than in 2010, the year that the 24th solar cycle began to activate after a really long solar minimum. A summary of all these events was made in a video which you can now find on our YouTube channel, you’ll be amazed what happened this year on our Sun and the aurorae that came with it.

We can also say that 2014 was a solar maximum for our website, it was a year with tremendous growth for us and all our records were shattered this year. We more than doubled our numbers of visitors and it’s still growing fast every month. Thank you so much for your support and trust! Also on our social media channels our fans and followers more than doubled. Our investment in a stronger server was worth it and this was able to keep our website online even during the strongest solar and geomagnetic activity of this year. This would not have been possible without the kind donations of several visitors which we are very thankful of. Our website has also expanded a lot this year with many new features like the top lists for solar flares, active regions and geomagnetic storms  improved alerts, active region detection with flares, new help pages, active region pages in our archive and much much more! Our top new item was our news publications page which used to be on the community forum. This big change gives us the ability to bring you more up to date news and put a brighter spotlight on the events that happen on the Sun or here at Earth. The feedback that we received this year was really great and we will keep working on the site to provide you with high quality solar and auroral information in 2015.
 
What you perhaps did not know is that SpaceWeatherLive has a great team behind the scenes working really hard to give you the best experience possible. First we have our webmaster Sander who codes and builds the whole website. Thanks to his expertise we can offer never before seen features like active region detection during a solar flare and automated coronal mass ejection impact alerts. Another large factor behind the success of SpaceWeatherLive is Marcel who delivers you the best solar activity videos, news and social updates. We also have a whole bunch of translators that help out with internationalizing our website into different languages and keeps them up to date. SpaceWeatherLive would not be the same without these people! Another large thank you goes to all those people who cooperated with us this year either on our social media channels or just the occasional chat with one of us about our favorite hobby. Last but not least an enormous thank you to those who contributed to the site with a donation! SpaceWeatherLive would not be online right now without your support!
 
SpaceWeatherLive is part of a non-profit association called “Astro Event Group vzw” with it’s home in Belgium (Europe). Our organization has the goal to expand the knowledge of all astronomy and space related information into the world. SpaceWeatherLive does that by making space weather accessible to the big public with an easy to use website and lots of self-explaining graphs and data. The SpaceWeatherLive team is always looking for more enthusiastic members to join our team of enthusiasts. By working and putting our knowledge together we aim to provide you with the best information possible.
 
Thank you all! We wish you a Merry Christmas and a fantastic New Year!
 
The SpaceWeatherLive Team
 
Special thanks go to the following people and organisations: all the photographers who send in their auroral images. The people behind the STEREO, ISS, SDO, SOHO, ACE and GOES missions. Nariaki Nitta/LMSAL. All of our contributers who supported us with a donation. NOAA SPWC and the SIDC.
Any mentioned solar flare in this article has a scaling factor applied by the Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC), the reported solar flares are 42% smaller than for the science quality data. The scaling factor has been removed from our archived solar flare data to reflect the true physical units.

Thank you for reading this article! Did you have any trouble with the technical terms used in this article? Our help section is the place to be where you can find in-depth articles, a FAQ and a list with common abbreviations. Still puzzled? Just post on our forum where we will help you the best we can! Never want to miss out on a space weather event or one of our news articles again? Subscribe to our mailing list, follow us on Twitter and Facebook and download the SpaceWeatherLive app for Android and iOS!

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A lot of people come to SpaceWeatherLive to follow the Sun's activity or if there is aurora to be seen, but with more traffic comes higher server costs. Consider a donation if you enjoy SpaceWeatherLive so we can keep the website online!

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