Astrophotography by Philipp Salzgeber




Wolfurt / Austria

Aurora Borealis

Aurora Borealis visible from Austria

The Northern Lights visiting the temperate zone...

Only a few times during the maximum of the 11year solar cycle are auroras visible as far south as Austria.

After I had seen the auroral display on October 21st, I was anxious to see more. Luckily another interplanetary shock wave hit the Earth only two days later. After having a look at the spaceweather - forecast I drove up to a relatively dark site and waited for two hours for the show to happen.

I quit at about 23:10. Arriving at home I found out that I have missed a strong auroral display at 23:15. Since the geomagnetic storm was still raging, I took a look outside and saw a faint red curtain across the northern sky. I rushed to the car to get back up in the mountains.

There I waited for another 45 minutes, but to no avail. I saw some nice meteors, Orion rising but I could never convince myself that I REALLY saw a hint of red due north.

But when I got the film back from the lab. I was quite surprised! The camera HAD recorded an Aurora. For the picture above I mosaicked two single images.
The Constellation Big Dipper (Ursa Major) is visible at in the left part of the image.

Nikon FM2
~60sec, f/2.0, 35mm, Kodak Royal Gold 1000
Scanning with Umax Astra 1220s flatbed scanner, combined two images

All images Philipp Salzgeber

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