Click on Thumbnail Below for a bigger image.
Between about 10 and 11 pm on December 26, a fast moving solar wind from a coronal hole was predicted to impact the earth, and did not disappoint. We were ready, and when the Kp value peaked beyond 6, we were out on this moonless night looking northward. We were rewarded with a cherry red glow to the north, moving about on the order of minute by minute, from north east swinging to the north west. The display lasted only a short period of time, and was the first time we had seen a visible display with the Kp so low, 6.3 at the peak of the storm which lasted about 30 minutes.
This series of images was taken with my 28mm f/2.8 lens on my Pentax K1000, and Kodak PJ400 negative film. We were probably the southernmost latitude to view this event, most observers were north of +45 N latitude. Exposure times were 4 and 8 minutes.
||Just to the right of center is the maximum Kp value of 6.3 we observed and nearly all the images that revealed any hint of reds and greens were taken in that narrow window. The rest of the images were a normal neutral in color.|
||Deep reds are almost always the color aurora we get here in Az, so a film with a decent red response is a must.|
||The deepest reds occurred around 10:30 pm, and were followed by the greens seen in the next image.|
||Layers of red and thin bands of greens are the highlights of this image, looking almost due north. The bowl of the the big dipper is off to the right.|
||Patches of reds were seen pulsating in the north visually, the camera only recording the average of the whole display with the long exposures.|
||One of the last frames before the sky turned back to a colorless neutral gray it normally is on a regular dark night.|
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