Very deep M6.7 earthquake under Flores Sea, Indonesia
A very deep earthquake registered by the BMKG as M6.7 hit under the Flores Sea, Indonesia at 15:35 UTC on August 17, 2018. The agency is reporting a depth of 559 km (347 miles). USGS is reporting M6.5 at a depth of 538.7 km (334 miles). EMSC is reporting M6.1 at a depth of 546 km (339 miles). This earthquake can have a low humanitarian impact based on the magnitude and the affected population and their vulnerability. According to the USGS, the epicenter was located 109.3 km (67.9 miles) NNW of Kampungbajo, 120 km (74.5 miles) N of Labuan Bajo (population 188 724), 150.3 km (93.4 miles) NNW of Ruteng (population 34 569) and 167 km (103.8 miles) NE of Bima (population 66 970), Indonesia. The quake had no tsunami potential, BMKG said. There are about 3 000 people living within 100 km (62 miles). Some 26 659 000 people are estimated to have felt weak shaking. The USGS issued a green alert for shaking-related fatalities and economic los…


Magnetic maps of the sun's atmosphere reveal a long gash, more than 700,000 km long, where solar wind may be spraying into the solar system. This image of the structure is based on data from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory

Astronomers call this a "coronal hole"--a region when the sun's magnetic field opens up and allows solar wind to escape. Coronal holes are common, appearing every few weeks. This one, however, is uncommonly long and narrow. A fan-shaped spray of gaseous material flowing from the gash could reach our planet as early as Dec. 23rd. Arctic sky watchers should be alert for auroras when the solar wind arrives.

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