Noctilucent clouds meets Northern lights 15./16.8.2015

Observed phenomena: Noctilucent clouds, northern lights

Noctilucent clouds
Observed NLC forms:

  • I (Veil)
  • IIa (Bands with diffuse, blurred edges)
  • IIIa (Short, straight and narrow streaks)
  • IVa (Whirls with small angular radius (0.1 – 0.5 degrees))

Brightness of the NLCs: 4 (NLC very bright and attracting the attention of casual observers)
Elevation: ~2°

Date: 15./16.8.2015
Time: 21:05-23:45 UT
Observing place: Parainen, Finland
Observing method: Photography, visual
Technical information about photographing equipment: Canon EOS 1100D + Tamron 10-24mm zoom lens
Observing conditions: Clear sky, no Moon

Northern lights

Observed phenomena: Aurora borealis
Date: 15./16.8.2015
Time: 20:30-00:15 UT
Observing place: Parainen, Finland
Observing method: Photography, visual
Technical information about photographing equipment: Canon EOS 1100D + Tamron 10-24mm zoom lens
Observing conditions: Clear sky, no Moon
Observed aurora forms:

  • Arc
  • Band
  • Rays

Elevation: 30 degrees
Brightness of the aurora: 3 (1-5)

During the night between 15th and 16th of August I drove to Parainen, my dark sky -site near Turku in order to observe deep sky objects visually with my large dobson. When I arrived at the site, a surprising sight was welcoming me in the northern sky, northern lights! This was quite exceptional, as northern lighs aren’t that regular sight in southern part of Finland, and especially not in August!

The display of northern lights was dominated by an aurora arc/band in northern sky. At irregular intervals, the band activated and got a bit brighter, also some fine aurora rays were present with the band! The maximum altitude of the northern lights was about 30 degrees.

The display became even more unusual, when also another phenomenon of high atmosphere appeared in the sky with the northern lights, noctilucent clouds! The NLC’s were at very low altitude in the northern horizon, but they were bright and clearly visible! I cannot remember having observed northern lights together with noctilucent clouds ever bofere this co-appearance of these phenomenae!

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