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#924929 - 12/05/17 07:02 AM Re: Hunting the Light [Re: Mona - Astronomy]
Mona - Astronomy Offline
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Tiger

Registered: 05/01/10
Posts: 6358
Loc: United Kingdom
The aurora season returns to the North when the sky gets dark enough to see aurorae. That's actually sometime in August. But here's something unusual, an aurora in Massachusetts in early September. The auroral display so far south was triggered by a big magnetic storm.

If you look closely at the sky, you should be able to pick out the Big Dipper (Plough) and the Little Dipper.
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#924960 - 12/06/17 12:33 PM Re: Hunting the Light [Re: Mona - Astronomy]
Mona - Astronomy Offline
BellaOnline Editor
Tiger

Registered: 05/01/10
Posts: 6358
Loc: United Kingdom
The aurora borealis (northern lights) are best known because of the number of people that live within the Arctic circle. But there is also an aurora australis (southern lights) - that occurs just as often, but isn't seen as often as the northern lights.

Here is a Red Aurora Over Australia (Credit & Copyright: Alex Cherney (Terrastro, TWAN)) It was caused by a solar storm in 2012. A red aurora is higher in the atmosphere than the more usual green ones. It's odd that both colors weren't present.

In addition to the aurora, there are quite a lot of sky objects to be seen. The Milky Way, on the left, is the most prominent. But look low in the sky near the left-hand edge for a star that looks bright orange - that's Antares the heart of Scorpius. Near the top of the Milky Way there are two bright stars, one above the other - the lower one is Alpha Centauri with Beta Centauri is above it. Above and slightly to the right of these two stars is the Coalsack, a dark nebula. The Magellanic Clouds are two small neighboring galaxies and they do look cloudlike. The Small Magellanic Cloud is to the right of and just above center. The Large Magellanic Cloud is near the top of the image on the right-hand side.
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