posted on Dec, 1 2012 @ 11:21 AM
New Camera Provides Tantalizing Clues of New Atmospheric Phenomenon.
Looks like one out of an old marble collection.
Hoping to expand our understanding of auroras and other fleeting atmospheric events, a team of space-weather researchers designed and built
NORUSCA II, a new camera with unprecedented capabilities that can simultaneously image multiple spectral bands, in essence different wavelengths or
colors, of light. The camera was tested at the Kjell Henriksen Observatory (KHO) in Svalbard, Norway, where it produced the first-ever hyperspectral
images of auroras -- commonly referred to as "the Northern (or Southern) Lights" -- and may already have revealed a previously unknown atmospheric
The new NORUSCA II hyperspectral camera achieves the same result without any moving parts, using its advanced optics to switch among all of its 41
separate optical bands in a matter of microseconds, orders of magnitude faster than an ordinary camera. This opens up new possibilities for discovery
by combining specific bands of the same ethereal phenomenon into one image, revealing previously hidden details.
In a nutshell Auroras are created when charged particles from the Sun penetrate Earth's magnetic field.
Current cameras are simply light buckets,meaning they collect all the light together into one image, and lack the ability to separately capture and
analyze multiple slivers of the visible spectrum. So to study auroras by looking at specific bands or a small portion of the spectrum they would have
to use a series of filters to block out the unwanted wavelengths.
"A standard filter wheel camera that typically uses six interference filters will not be able to spin the wheel fast enough compared to the
NORUSCA II camera,"
edit on 1-12-2012 by Lonewulph because: (no reason given)