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Spectacular noctilucent cloud display over Europe last night

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posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 04:48 AM
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I got home from work around 1am last night and there was a really impressive display of noctilucent clouds - brightly shining clouds made up of ice crystals in the far upper atmosphere about 50 miles (~260,000ft) above the Earth. That's about 10 times higher than typical "high cloud" such as cirrus.

Because they are so high above the Earth, they remain illuminated by the sun at this time of year even in the middle of the night at high latitudes (I am about 51 degrees north).

Sadly my attempts at photos didn't really come out, but there are some good ones on this site: earthsky.org...

One of them here (not my photo; it was taken in Poland)



The clouds are also visible in this satellite image of the UK, taken just before 2am. Notice how the Earth is in darkness but the clouds are shining brightly and even exhibit some rainbow coloration (look at top right especially)...



A nice consolation for being at work till midnight!
edit on 4-7-2014 by Rob48 because: (no reason given)




posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 05:15 AM
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They are a magnificent sight to behold on the rare occasion I've seen them down-under, they are very other-worldly! I would have loved to have seen them with you.

But for the sanity of the rest of the world....
50 Miles = approx 80 (km) or 80,467 Meters
Surely it's about time you lot got on the metric train! :-)



posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 05:28 AM
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originally posted by: Qumulys
But for the sanity of the rest of the world....
50 Miles = approx 80 (km) or 80,467 Meters
Surely it's about time you lot got on the metric train! :-)



I actually had 80km in the source I looked up. I converted it to miles and feet for the benefit of the Americans who (I presume) make up most of the readership of this forum!

Here in the UK we're pretty much bilingual. People's height is in feet and inches. Clothes are measured in inches. Furniture is measured in centimetres. Beer and milk are in pints, petrol is in litres. Speed limits are in miles per hour but our maps give measurements in metres.

Long live the unholy unit mish-mash



posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 05:30 AM
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I seen some noctilucent clouds in the UK last year, awesome sight.

These ones were a bit north for me to see, will keep checking the skies.



posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 05:35 AM
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I've never seen or heard of this phenomenon but it's a beautiful sight. Your photo is pretty good by the way.



posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 05:43 AM
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a reply to: Rob48

I think living in the UK would frustrate the heck out of me! Mind you, down-under height is in feet as well. But at least we keep liquids in order with milk and petrol set to the obviously superior litres. Well, except the pub uses pints... hmm I guess people in glass continents shouldn't throw stones :-)

If you find any more pics of last nights skies I'd love to see them, but I think much of the magic is the atmosphere they create. As a youngster we would sneak out and trek to the top of a Mt Dandenong (a good few hours walking), and would sit up there watching the stars. More often than not there are a few guys up there with telescopes who are eager to share viewfinders. It was magic up there, I actually saw Haleys comet up there. But it was a little underwhelming when viewed from the southern hemisphere at the time. But those nights we would sneak out, one time the sky was streaked with epic noctilucent clouds which we didn't understand at the time. Because we had walked miles to get there, I mean kilometers, our eye's were night adjusted and the clouds were these amazing lamps casting excitement and wonder in us.

What a memory.
I wish I could go back and get pics, but it was decades ago now



EDIT
Another photo of the July 3rd noctilucence display.

Source
edit on 4-7-2014 by Qumulys because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 05:47 AM
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originally posted by: LogicalGraphitti
I've never seen or heard of this phenomenon but it's a beautiful sight. Your photo is pretty good by the way.


I can't take the credit for that one - it's from the site I linked to. My photo only showed some orangey blobs, sadly! I have edited to make this clearer.



posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 05:52 AM
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Ah what a shame I missed those, but here in Scotland there was low cloud and rain. So I guess these clouds were happening above the lower layer of cloud.



posted on Jul, 4 2014 @ 06:46 AM
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a reply to: Rob48

Nice phenomena, one I don't recall ever seeing or hearing about. And once again a great thread presentation. You give good thread.



posted on Jul, 8 2014 @ 01:01 AM
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Beautiful.
What more can be said?


Thanks for posting



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