Monday, March 30, 2015

Extremely Brilliant Aurora

In March 17,  a massive solar storm ranked as G4 geomagnetic storm bombarded the earth, which triggered another brilliant auroras right over our city and even in other parts of the world, like northern United States and Canada.

According to one skywatcher-photographer in our province, Västerbotten, his aurora activity scale registered an index of 8 kp, so extreme that even at 6:00 p.m. that day while it was still bright, he could already see traces of the lights in their place. 

It was when I came  home after our meeting at the KH that I had the chance to watch it right from our backyard. I started seeing the lights a few minutes before 9:00 p.m. and kept watching until 10:30 p.m. 

I'm describing this aurora "extremely brilliant", which sounds redundant because brilliant may be the highest level of brightness and thus need not have the intensifier "extremely". On the other hand, extremely could refer to the extreme degree, such as in 8 kp index, of this night's northern lights. 

The lights proved to be so brilliant and immense that I could only photograph fragments, as always. They also danced in circles around the sky and covered the whole sky from my vantage point, which made it impossible to shoot the whole of the show even with a wide-angle lens.

So once more, I want to showcase my fragmentary captures in this post. I know they're nothing compared to the jaw-dropping, mind-blowing photos that have swept the cyberworld during this particular period, but I feel euphoric to have my own humble pictures too. But then again, the paramount thing is that I was able to watch the breathtakingly colorful lights dancing throughout the expanse.

(Note: these were taken with a compact camera mounted on a tripod set to auto at 15 sec exposure)

auroral corona

 auroral corona

more auroral corona captures

I also used my mini point-and-shoot camera without tripod in this set of images.

Thanks for dropping by. I hope you enjoyed the show. Have a wonderful week!

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