Space Weather: Last night in Otago, New Zealand, Ian Griffin counted more than a dozen “Aurora Sprites”

sprites_strip.jpg

http://spaceweather.com/

New Zealand, Ian Griffin counted more than a dozen “aurora sprites” dancing over Hoopers Inlet.  “The display was very beautiful,” says Griffin, “with ghostly auroral sprites putting on a display that lasted for several hours.”

Also known as “picket fence auroras,” these vertical rays trace lines of magnetic force connecting Earth to space. The luminous columns show where beams of energetic particles are being guided toward Earth’s upper atmosphere by magnetic fields.

The solar wind stream that instigated the display has produced many enchanting auroral forms since March 1st.  Browse the realtime gallery for more:

Realtime Aurora Photo Gallery

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