05 Oct '11
On September 26, 2011, a large coronal mass ejection (CME) hit Earth’s magnetic field, producing some of the most amazing auroras in many years. The CME occurred on the 22nd, but the magnetic field takes approximately four days to interact with the Earth’s atmosphere. The severe geomagnetic storm created spectacular auroras visible from most higher latitudes, and were photographed across Europe and from a handful of northern U.S. states. The most stunning views graced the night sky above Norway for a full three days. The source of the geomagnetic activity, sunspot AR1302, measures over 150,000 km in length and was visible during sunset. We are currently in the midst of a solar maximum, a term used to describe the peak of solar activity, which happens every 11 years and last occurred in 2001. For more info on tracking the solar cycle and space phenomenon, check out Space Weather. And check out this video of last week’s auroras as seen from the International Space Station.
Via - The Intern