Aurora Sept. 19, 2016. Credit: Bob King

Aurora Right On Schedule Tonight

I’m always tickled and amazed when an aurora is forecast, and it happens exactly at the predicted time. So it was earlier tonight and may still be now. Although the waning gibbous moon is finally climbing above the horizon, I could still see a foggy greenish rainbow splayed across the northern sky in despite moonlight. This aurora,…
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A colorful aurora photographed in early fall. Credit: Bob King

Two Days Before Fall, The Aurora May Come Knocking

It’s been a while. No northern lights in the neighborhood for a couple weeks at least. That could change tomorrow evening (Sept. 19) when the wind blowing from a solar coronal hole wafts past Earth. If the magnetic direction of that wind points south — just like the south pole of a magnet — it…
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MAS Aurora Sept2_2016 Aurora with 25S observerFEA

Auroras One, Two, Three … Four Nights In A Row?

More often scarce than not, auroras have suddenly become regular visitors this week. On Wednesday night, they put in a modest appearance; Thursday they were spectacular and last night’s show was modestly spectacular. Each night, the northern lights has graced mid-latitude skywatchers with a different face, showing an amazing variety of forms: arcs, pillars, isolated…
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Credit: Bob King

Surprise Aurora Tonight — Weird And Wonderful!

Earlier this afternoon, the aurora forecast didn’t indicate much happening over the next two nights. But by early evening a new forecast popped into my e-mail that made me sit up straight. A G2 moderate storm was already underway. Since it was still too light out to see anything, I finished dinner and waited for darkness to arrive. At…
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Aurora Aug31_2016 low arc_S_FEA

Kiss Of Aurora In The North Tonight

Walking the dog this evening I noticed the northern horizon aglow with aurora. Once Sammy was back in her kennel and happily munching on a milk bone, I found a better view and brought a camera. A low, smooth arc only about 5° (half a fist) high stretched from northeast to northwest. Judging by altitude, the arc’s edge…
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