What are the Northern Lights and the Best Places to Watch the Northern Lights?
What are the Northern Lights; Inside the Sun there is a fusion reaction of hydrogen nuclei, in which helium nuclei are formed. At the same time, electromagnetic waves are emitted, in particular that visible and invisible light, thanks to which there is life on Earth. At the same time, the Sun leaves a huge number of charged particles – protons and electrons. Their flow is called the solar wind.
The thermonuclear fusion reaction of hydrogen nuclei does not proceed calmly and evenly. From time to time, powerful explosions occur, before which the entire human nuclear potential is nothing.
During such solar flares, the flux of neutrons and electrons increases sharply. Depending on the departure speed, after a day or two, a stream of particles reaches the Earth and enters its magnetic field. The configuration of the lines of force of the Earth’s magnetic field is such that under its action, solar protons and electrons, despite the enormous speed of their movement, cannot reach the dense lower layers of the atmosphere at equatorial latitudes. However, in the circumpolar regions such penetration is possible, including for particles drifted along the lines of force from the equator.
Auroras are just one of the manifestations of solar flares. Powerful electric currents caused by the complex movement of charged particles create magnetic fields and what is called a magnetic storm occurs.
Where I can Watch Northern Lights
The best places to watch northern light in our Planet;
- Ivalo, Finland
- Abisko, Sweden
- Akureyri, Iceland
- Khibiny, Kola Peninsula
- Tromso and Alta, Norway
- Arkhangelsk region, Russia
- Khatanga, Krasnoyarsk Territory
- Longyearbyen, Svalbard, Norway
- Murmansk region, Russia
- Vorkuta, Komi Republic of the Russian Federation
How to See the Northern Lights? What To Care?
From 10 PM to 3 AM the chances of watching the polar lights increase. If the stars and the moon are not visible, you can see the northern lights and even more so.
The illumination of large settlements light can disappear. Therefore, either stay in small villages, or at night drive away from the cities at a decent distance.
Nights beyond the Arctic Circle, weather is cold and icy. Dress as warm as possible. You need to take care of heating: to have in reserve a couple of cans of gasoline in the car.
A more romantic option is to take firewood with you and bask around the fire (do not forget the ignition fluid).
High-quality photographs of the northern lights can only be done with good long-exposure equipment, and with a tripod. If you shoot just for yourself, then a smartphone will do.
If you decide to make night outings by car, you should think about safety. Be sure to tell someone in the city which direction you are going. It is better to have a GPS tracker with you, which will transmit data about your whereabouts to your “connected” smartphone. Do not forget the car charger and a spare battery for your phone. If you are traveling in a large group, it makes sense to take a walkie-talkie.