March 12th 2010, Exeter Airport

The pre-flight presentations were held in the main departure hall, Exeter Airport. Nigel Bradbury provided a 30 minute talk on the stars and constellations that would be visible during the flight whilst Pete Lawrence explained the connections between the Sun and the Aurora.

The activity predictions for tonight were average to good. There was a reasonably good probability of a disturbance in the solar wind but the vertical component of the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF), known as Bz, was not easy to predict. If Bz is north, the fields oppose one another and the aurora tends to be quiet. If Bz points south, the IMF and Earth's magnetic field can connect and auroral displays are more likely to occur.

As usual during the flight, the stars looked beautifully crisp and clear. Nigel Bradbury and Pete Lawrence provided an enthusiastic commentary on what could be seen in terms of the stars, constellations and auroral activity outside the plane. Paul Money acted as the onboard astronomical rover on this occasion, assisting any passengers who weren't sure what was being described.

The aurora was initially seen as a faint glow on the horizon, resembling a glowing mist. A brighter region appeared temporarily later into the flight and this exhibited a moving ray structure.

Pete and Paul attempted to photograph the aurora and a number of the images taken on the Exeter flight are shown below.


Image ref: S10_EXE0526 by Pete Lawrence
You may download (right click and save as) this image for any non-commercial purpose. If you'd like a 12"x8" photographic print of it (7.00+ p&p) please click the button below.
Please allow up to 28 days for delivery.




Image ref: S10_EXE0517 by Pete Lawrence
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Please allow up to 28 days for delivery.




Image ref: S10_EXE0514 by Pete Lawrence
You may download (right click and save as) this image for any non-commercial purpose. If you'd like a 12"x8" photographic print of it (7.00+ p&p) please click the button below.
Please allow up to 28 days for delivery.




Image ref: S10_EXE0511 by Pete Lawrence
You may download (right click and save as) this image for any non-commercial purpose. If you'd like a 12"x8" photographic print of it (7.00+ p&p) please click the button below.
Please allow up to 28 days for delivery.




Image ref: S10_EXE0504 by Pete Lawrence
You may download (right click and save as) this image for any non-commercial purpose. If you'd like a 12"x8" photographic print of it (7.00+ p&p) please click the button below.
Please allow up to 28 days for delivery.




Image ref: S10_EXE0503 by Pete Lawrence
You may download (right click and save as) this image for any non-commercial purpose. If you'd like a 12"x8" photographic print of it (7.00+ p&p) please click the button below.
Please allow up to 28 days for delivery.




Image ref: S10_EXE0501 by Pete Lawrence
You may download (right click and save as) this image for any non-commercial purpose. If you'd like a 12"x8" photographic print of it (7.00+ p&p) please click the button below.
Please allow up to 28 days for delivery.




Image ref: S10_EXE0499 by Pete Lawrence
You may download (right click and save as) this image for any non-commercial purpose. If you'd like a 12"x8" photographic print of it (7.00+ p&p) please click the button below.
Please allow up to 28 days for delivery.