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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Noctilucent clouds 23./24.7.2015

Observed phenomena: Noctilucent clouds
Observed NLC forms:

  • I (Veil)
  • IIa (Bands with diffuse, blurred edges)
  • IIIa (Short, straight and narrow streaks)
  • IIIb (Wave-like structure with undulations)
  • IVb ( Simple curve(s) with angular radius of 3 – 5 degrees)
  • IVc (Large-scale whirls)
  • 0 (A form which does not fit into types I – IV)
  • V (A net-like structure)

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

Elevation: ~60°

Date: 23./24.7.2015
Time: 21:05-21:40 UT
Observing place: Ulvila, Finland
Observing method: Photography, visual
Technical information about photographing equipment: Sony Xperia Z1 Compact -smartphone camera

During the night between 23rd and 24th of July very bright noctilucent clouds appeared in the sky of Finland! The NLC’s were visible already before midnight! During the night, I was observing in near town of Ulvila, Western Finland, but clouds interfered severy my observing session. I was taking photos just with my smartphone camera, because the clouds were slowly but surely coming, and I wanted to get at least some photos! The NLC’s were very bright, and they were consisted of all kinds of forms, mainly waves. Despite the clouds, I could observe, that the NLC’s were extending from western sky to east, and their maximum altitude was about 60 degrees.

New season of noctilucent clouds has started!

Observed phenomena: Noctilucent clouds
Observed NLC forms:

  • I (Veil)
  • IIa (Bands with diffuse, blurred edges)
  • IIIa (Short, straight and narrow streaks)
  • IVc (Large-scale whirls)

Brightness of the NLCs: 3 (NLC clearly visible, standing out sharply against the twilight sky.)

Elevation: 150°

Date: 01./02.7.2015
Time: 21:45-22:15 UT
Observing place: Ulvila, Finland
Observing method: Photography
Technical information about photographing equipment: Canon EOS 1100D, Samyang 8mm fish eye -lens

The NLC season of 2015 has started! I observed my first NLC’s for this year in the night between 1st and 2nd of June 2015. The NLC’s covered pretty much the whole sky! They extended from northern sky all the way to the southern wky, where only the shadow of the Earth was limiting the visibility of the NLC’s. The most dominant NLC forms in this display were belts and large scale whirls. Aslo some wave-stacks were visible.

Great display of noctilucent clouds over Finland

I observed a bright display of noctilucent clouds over sky of Turku, SW Finland in the night between 23./24. of July 2014. I spotted the clouds already at 20:30 UT when sky was still considerably light. I walked to my observing site, and I was greeted with a magnificent all sky display of noctilucent clouds! The noctilucent clouds just got brighter as the night proceeded. During the deepest twilight of Finnishs summer night, the night shining clouds were evolving quickly and developing all kinds of complex structure and forms! The noctilucent clouds were still visible when I went sleeping at about 00:00 UT.

Bright noctilucent clouds 11./12.7.2014

Observed phenomena: Noctilucent clouds
Observed NLC forms:

  • I (Veil)
  • IIa (Bands with diffuse, blurred edges)
  • IIb (Bands with sharply defined edges)
  • IIIa (Short, straight and narrow streaks)
  • IIIb (Wave-like structure with undulations)
  • IVa (Whirls with small angular radius (0.1 – 0.5 degrees))
  • IVb (Simple curve(s) with angular radius of 3 – 5 degrees)
  • IVc (Large-scale whirls)
  • 0 (A form which does not fit into types I – IV)
  • S (NLC with bright ‘knots’)
  • P (Billows crossing a band)

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

Elevation: 130°

Date: 11./12.7.2014
Time: 22:00-00:00 UT
Observing place: Turku, Finland
Observing method: Photography
Technical information about photographing equipment: Canon EOS 1100D, Canon EF-S 18-55mm

A very bright all-sky NLC display appeared in the sky of Turku in the night between 11th and 12th of July 2014! During the night, the NLC’s extended long way to the southern sky, only the shadow of Earth was limiting the visibility of NLC’s. In this display, practically all kinds of NLC forms were visible. The display was dominated by a persistent fan-like structure formed by NLC belts which was opening from northeastern sky. Some belts in western sky reached brightness 5, which is the highest brightness in the brightness scale used with noctilucent clouds. The NLC’s were also very persistent, and it took long time for them to vanish completely to the sunrise. I noticed the NLC’s at 22:00 UT and they were visible still at 01:00 UT, when sky was already very light!.

Bright noctilucent clouds in the sky of Turku 19./20.7.2013

Observed phenomena: Noctilucent clouds
Observed NLC forms:

I (Veil)
IIb (Bands with sharply defined edges)
IIIa (Waves, short, straight and narrow streaks)
IVb: Simple curve(s) with angular radius of 3 – 5 degrees

Brightness of the NLCs: 4 (very bright and attracting the attention of casual observers)

Date: 19./20.7.2013
Time: 00:50-02:15
Observing place: Turku, Finland
Observing method: Photography
Technical information about photographing equipment: Canon EOS 1100D, Canon EF-S 18-55mm IS, Samyang 8mm fish eye

A bright display of noctilucent clouds was observed in the sky of Turku, Finland in the night between 19th and 20th of July, 2013. I was observing the display in the Luolavuori -hill, which is situated few kilometres south from Turku downtown. From the hill, the horizon is totally open to every direction!

On that night, there were two detached NLC areas in the northern sector of the sky. The NLC’s covered the northern half of the sky from west to east, ant the maximum altitude of the NLC’s was about 40°. Especially the NLC area located in the northeastern-eastern sky was very bright. The dominating NLC forms were veil (I), sharp bands (IIb) and short and straight waves (IIIa). These late-July NLC displays are usually very nice to observe, because the background sky is already getting darker, and the NLC’s stand out very clearly from the sky!

Bright display of noctilucent clouds 8./9.7.2013

Observed phenomena: Noctilucent clouds
Observed NLC forms:

  • I (Veil)
  • IIa (Bands with diffuse, blurred edges)
  • IIb (Bands with sharply defined edges)
  • IIIa (Waves, short, straight and narrow streaks)
  • IIIb (Wave-like structure with undulations)
  • IVa: Whirls with small angular radius (0.1 – 0.5 degrees)
  • IVb: Simple curve(s) with angular radius of 3 – 5 degrees
  • O (Unusual forms)

Brightness of the NLCs: 4 (very bright and attracting the attention of casual observers)

Date: 8./9.7.2013
Time: 01:30-02:20
Observing place: Turku, Finland
Observing method: Photography
Technical information about photographing equipment: Canon EOS 1100D, Canon EF-S 18-55mm IS, Samyang 8mm fish eye

I observed a bright display of noctilucent clouds in the night between 8th and 9th of July 2013. This display was clearly the brightest so far this summer! This display was very dynamic and it was evolving rapidly. The NLC’s covered a large area of the sky and they were concentrated on the northern sector of the sky. Only the southern sector of the sky was clear of noctilucent clouds, because the shadow of the Earth was limiting the visibility of the NLC’s. The dominant NLC forms in this display were veil (I) and sharply defined belts (IIb), but also many other forms were present. This NLC display was observed also in many other places in Europe, for example in Denmark.