Saturday, 10 March 2012

Pink Aurora Australis from 9th March 2012!

Had a fantastic time at a local reserve in the hills of Perth last night taking photo's of the Aurora Australis. This is the resulting photograph of the aurora:

Aurora Australis from Perth Hills

I'm really happy with this shot - while the Aurora Australis its self is not enormous due to the full moon, it is a nice subtle pink on the southern horizon and has a nice framing of trees around the borders to finish it off. I also like the subtle blue tones to the sky, caused by the full moon.

The full moon washed out much of the aurora. You can see the horizon and sky gets brighter to the left (east), because the moon was in the eastern sky. Hopefully next time we have a chance for aurora there will be no full moon.

It was a very nice evening - typical summer for Perth. 38 degrees C during the day, cooled down to about 22 degrees when this photograph was taken. There was a slight breeze, and you can see the movement in the tree branches. Sitting on the edge of the lake photographing and waiting for the aurora was a very relaxing way to end the week.

While the above photograph is of production quality showing nice sharp star trails together with the Aurora Australis and foreground trees, I don't have plans at this stage to keep prints of it in stock. I am happy to have once-off prints made up upon request, upto 80cm size. Contact me if interested.

3 comments:

  1. Great shot mate,can you tell me or direct me to a website where i can find out the best times to view the southern lights? Joe

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  2. If you are in Australia the best place to keep an eye on to know if or when an aurora is going to be visible is the IPS Space Weather page at the Bureau of Meterology: http://www.ips.gov.au/Space_Weather

    At that page you will see a "K-Index" value and associated sub-page, this is what you need to watch. When the K-Index is above 4 southern latitudes (New Zealand and Tasmania) have a chance, when it's above 5 southern mainland Australia has a chance of seeing Aurora. I find that a Kp of 6 or 7 means it's very likely Perth will see an Aurora.

    Unfortunately the Kp-index measure is real-time not predictive. So you need to keep aware of when it might go up, which is most directly related to solar activity. To know when solar activity might increase the Kp-Index keep an eye on spaceweather.com, which also provides useful information to know if an aurora is likely but is more focused on the northern hemisphere than the above IPS page.

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    Replies
    1. Cheers for getting back to me so quickly, i shall be keeping an eye on all that. I'm in Perth at the mo so if it happens again ill prob bump into you in the perth hills haha Joe

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