WHAT’S GOING ON UP IN SPACE : the night sky resembles something from another world
Posted by themadhatter on July 4, 2014
Posted in: METEORITES. Tagged: METEORITES. 2 Comments
A Strange New Phenomenon
Electric-Blue Visitors From The Twilight Zone
NOCTILUCENT OUTBURST: For the past two nights, observers in many European countries have seen bright electric-blue noctilucent clouds after sunset. The display on July 3rd appears to be the best of the year so far, and would seem to herald even more widespread sightings in the nights ahead, not only in Europe but also in North America.
Sky watchers in Europe are reporting an outburst of bright noctilucent clouds (NLCs). The display began at sunset on July 3rd, filling northern horizons with electric-blue ripples, swirls, and tendrils of light.
They look alien. The electric-blue ripples and pale tendrils of NLCs reaching across the night sky resemble something from another world.
Researchers say that’s not far off. A key ingredient for the mysterious clouds comes from outer space.
NLCs are Earth’s highest clouds. Seeded by “meteor smoke,” they form at the edge of space 83 km above Earth’s surface. When sunlight hits the tiny ice crystals that make up these clouds, they glow electric blue.
When water molecules are wafted up from the lower atmosphere it mixes with the meteor smoke. That is also, ironically, when the upper atmosphere is coldest, allowing the ice crystals of NLCs to form.
Observing tips: Look west 30 to 60 minutes after sunset when the Sun has dipped 6o to 16o below the horizon.
If you see luminous blue-white tendrils spreading across the sky, you may have spotted a noctilucent cloud.
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Thanks to: http://outofthisworldx.wordpress.com