In 2015, strong solar storms allowed Marbleheaders to view the aurora borealis on two occasions - March and June. This is my last image from the earlier outing on March 17, 2015 that I had yet to share. With the sun having since diminished the frequency and severity of storms, I'm not sure that we'll have a chance to view these purple and green colors again for a while. *Note - the colors were not visible to the naked eye but required a long (25 second) exposure by the camera sensor
At last we reached the #1 spot in the Top 10 of 2015 Countdown and I think you'll agree this image of the aurora borealis (or Northern Lights) was an easy choice. So many factors have to come into place to see the aurora borealis as far south as Marblehead and it needs to be a pretty spectacular show to shine above the light pollution. On June 22, a 7 kP storm hit at just the right moment (9:50pm) for me to capture the intricate greens and purples of light playing over Cove Beach and setting up a perfect backdrop [...]
I first saw the Northern lights (or aurora borealis) from Marblehead in March 2015 during what was at the time the strongest solar storm to hit Earth in years. I felt incredibly fortunate to have witnessed and captured the scene and never imagined I would have an opportunity to repeat it let alone improve upon it. As it happened, an even stronger solar storm event took place on June 22nd. As night fell, the projected strength (or Kp) of the storm hit a whopping 8 which meant it would be visible from our relatively southern position in New England. With [...]
On Tuesday, March 17, the aurora borealis appeared in the sky over Marblehead, Massachusetts. I shared another image from this outing earlier in the day with a mix of green glow and purple spikes from the incredible light display. This image was captured five minutes earlier and shows a much broader and deeper green glow. I corrected the distortion in the lighthouse as it did not affect the aurora over Marblehead as in the other one.
It finally happened! I can't count how many times I have left the house late at night with the hope of capturing the aurora borealis over Marblehead Light. The northern lights occur when charged particles enter the Earth's atmosphere. On March 15, two coronal mass ejections sprouted from the Sun and headed towards Earth bringing with them a LOT of those charged particles. The strength of the aurora is measured in Kp values and, in Marblehead, we need to hit at least a Kp of 7 for any hope of seeing the northern lights. When the charged particles arrived on Earth [...]