Wow! What an auroral display!

Forums Atmospheric Phenomena Wow! What an auroral display!

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    Duncan Hale-Sutton

    Fantastic display this evening from Norfolk. Just clouding up now sadly.

    Eric Watkins

    Down here Braintree, Essex. A fair bit of mist/high fog here, but it shows through that. I haven’t got a camera ready.
    Clouding over here too

    Nick James

    Indeed. Amazing views over the Clyde from up in in Greenock. No camera with me so visual only but a really colourful, bright and dynamic display all over the sky. I can see that it was a really impressive display back home in Essex too. A great start to the BAA Spring meeting weekend!

    Gary Poyner

    North Birmingham treated to a fantastic auroral display this evening.

    Photo is a 3 second hand held with iPhone.


    Jeremy Shears

    Extraordinary! Splendid views in Cheshire

    David Swan


    Paul G. Abel

    Yes, even I put away the pencils and got out the camera!! Two images below taken on my IPhone.

    Richard Miles

    A few of us had a stargazing session at the Giant viewing area in Cerne Abbas, Dorset late yesterday evening.
    Early on about 10.00-11.00pm there was quite a bit of high cloud that largely dispersed by midnight.

    Here below are some hand-held views – one towards Giant Hill.
    Brightest star is Vega in Lyra and the clouds are visible as dark silhouettes.

    Although am at a relatively southerly latitude compared to other UK observers, at one point the aurora was visible above the southern horizon.
    You can see the parallelogram-shaped constellation of Corvus the Crow at a declination of -20° low down in the last two shots, where the brightest star is Spica.

    P R Hobson

    Visible in central London too!

    David Armitage

    Arcturus shines through the geomagnetic storm.

    Nick Quinn

    I had to drastically alter the scale on my magnetometer charts to accommodate the 700 nTesla deviation on the north-south sensor!

    stan armstrong

    Indeed, Duncan, it was a remarkable display, only surpassed by the one I witnessed over 30 years ago in my Loudwater Valley (M40 Jn3). My collection of refurbished old security cameras, some with just 2-megapixel resolution, allowed me to observe the event from various angles, from approximately 21:00 to 03:30 UT the following morning. While these cameras may not compare to even the most basic phone cameras today, the images they captured, though crudely assembled, reveal a fascinating progression of rays in terms of color, intensity, direction, and speed. The output process is slow, transferring via USB stick from recorders placed near the floor, and made even slower by my age-related infirmities. Yet, this slow pace affords me a precise approach to the observational content of the sequences I produce. Just minutes ago, after some diligent work, I sought some relaxation by visiting the IMO website—a welcome respite after losing access to the daily data from UKMON, which I often used and valued. I had captured the fireball event, designated as IMO 2340-2024, traversing through Cygnus, near Deneb, surrounded by, and mostly beneath, the blue/purple ionized rays. Currently, the IMO has no photographs or videos submitted for this event. To support visual observers, who are invaluable during special event surveys, my first priority is to edit a video of the fireball at 4 frames per second for submission to the IMO via the SPA. In the meantime, I am hopeful that a member of the BAA will assist me in creating a JPG still shot that captures the fireball’s dashed trajectory through the colorful skies. I’ve previously undertaken a meticulous course of manually ‘joining the dots’.. I Aam hopeful of the sort of guidance I would have received from ‘Dave Gavine and the Spectrum’ in earlier times.

    John Thorpe

    Missed the display in Kent, but my nephew Jamie in Canada sent me this photo from his roof in Vancouver:

    Duncan Hale-Sutton

    Thanks for all your interesting comments and great pictures. One thing I wanted to comment on was how the display changed over perhaps 30 to 40 minutes. Initially I could see the usual green arc with some rays in it. Then it appeared to me that the arc swelled and moved southwards. This After this we began to see the larger and more colourful red/pink/purple rays and eventually Corona.

    What are we seeing here? Is the auroral oval moving south as time progresses. Are the rays that we see overhead, the same rays seen in the green arc earlier? Is it because the oval has swept over our heads and the transition from green to red/pink/purple is just an effect of viewing angle? What do the experts say?

    Pauline Phillips

    We were lucky enough to have practically all sky access to the aurora from my back garden in West Berkshire, didn’t know which way to turn! The northern aspect was outshone by the display in the west and overhead. Phone images seemed as revealing as shots taken with the Canon 5d III! (image here)


    Here are my images from Bexleyheath in Greater London (Bortle 8)
    limiting mag is usually about 3.5 – 4 on a clear night.

    Gary Eason
    Bill Ward

    I was astonished to see the first activity as a lovely arc, grey green in colour to my SOUTH. spanned from SE through S to SW and was below Arcturus (“see aurora in south” image). After around 20mins the first sub-storm arrived and the coronal display pointing at Arcturus was remarkable.

    It just went manic for around another 20min before breaking up. Another sub-storm began to form at ~0100BST and the process repeated. There was just the faintest hints of both red and purple in places. Although these came out dramatically in the images. The motion was easily seen as it moved over head.
    It was still going as the sky brightened. A complete whole sky display from twilight to twilight…. the stuff of legend.

    I have never seen such purple colouration so extensively before. A combination of incoming particle energy and enhancement from sunlight via fluorescence scattering from N in the upper part of the aurora. I wonder what it would have looked like in a “darker” part of the year…?

    Certainly the best I’ve seen, since the big two night aurora in OCT 2003 and Nov 1979.

    Lets hope there’s more to come!


    Bill Ward

    …a little after thought…

    What was really cool was the fact there was a corona aurora boeralis IN corona boreralis! LOL : – )))

    Bill Ward

    Here are a couple of videos from a security type camera (tilted upwards) 5 second interval between grabs. The dimmer colour is actually a lot more realistic than in the still pics plus it shows the motions…


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