Sunday, December 17, 2006

Aurora Over Iowa, December 14th 2006

Credit & Copyright: Stan Richards (NightSkyEvents.com)
Explanation: Last Thursday evening, stars were not the only lights in Iowa skies. Spectacular
northern lights also shone from the heavens, extending across the midwestern USA and other locations not often graced with auroral displays. The wide-ranging auroral activity was triggered as a large solar flare - an energetic cloud of particles blasted outward from the Sun a few days earlier - collided with planet Earth's magnetosphere. Alerted to conditions ripe for aurora, photographer Stan Richard recorded this apparition over Saylorville Lake, near Des Moines, Iowa, USA. While the colorful rays seem to end just above the water, they are actually at altitudes of 100 kilometers or more.
Now that's amazing. I don't think I've ever heard of them coming so far south!

9 comments:

Farmer John said...

...the explanation gives a slightly inaccurate account... the aurora is a phenomena attributable to energetic particle reconnection on the far-side of the earth's magnetosphere... not so much a collision with the earth's magnetosphere.

Farmer John said...

...and I do believe the lights have been seen even further to the South...

Eyes said...

FJ, Are you sure you don't work for NASA???? Hee, hee,,,, Ho Ho HO!!! I've never seen 'em in Texas, but THAT would be cool! Heck I'd just be happy getting a little snow for Christmas....

Farmer John said...

Texas is a BIG state. I'm not sure that Santa can deliver snow to the entire state...

Eyes said...

WHAT? But I made my list. I checked it twice. I'm definitely one of the nice folks.

Farmer John said...

Well I'm ceratin that if the Spirit Wills it, it will happen.

Eyes said...

Amen!

The Merry Widow said...

Another beautiful picture, Eyes!
That was quite a blast from the sun...
Good morning, G*D bless and Maranatha!

tmw
Eyes-Will send you a funny e-mail later! Caleb and chickens...

Eyes said...

:>) tmw, looking forward to it.