Monday, October 10, 2005

Aurora borealis...

Well lucky me!

I had a chance to see a spectacular natural phenomenon, which only a few are lucky enough!

Northern lights! - also called Aurora borealis.

Brief on northern lights:

The sun gives off high-energy charged particles (also called ions) that travel out into space at speeds of 300 to 1200 kilometres per second. A cloud of such particles is called a plasma. The stream of plasma coming from the sun is known as the solar wind. As the solar wind interacts with the edge of the earth's magnetic field, some of the particles are trapped by it and they follow the lines of magnetic force down into the ionosphere, the section of the earth's atmosphere that extends from about 60 to 600 kilometres above the earth's surface. When the particles collide with the gases in the ionosphere they start to glow, producing the spectacle that we know as the auroras, northern and southern. The array of colours consists of red, green, blue and violet. The Northern Lights are constantly in motion because of the changing interaction between the solar wind and the earth's magnetic field.

I have never seen nature so close as this! To be there and experience this, was just spectacular! I don't know if the picture has come out so clear, but you can see dimly the greenish streak!


Anette said...

Hey Amit, this must have been really impressive! I want to see that at least once in my life too. Hugs, Anette

Romas said...

Oh, you lucky bastard. I wish I could see it too. Sadly they don't appear in places I've been till now.