November 7th 2010, Edinburgh Airport

The pre-flight presentations were held at the Edinburgh Hilton Hotel, Edinburgh Airport. Paul Money provided a 30 minute talk on the stars and constellations that would be visible during the flight. Pete Lawrence, then followed on to explain the connection between the Sun and the Aurora.

The activity predictions for tonight were difficult to predict mainly due to the vertical component of the Interplanetary Magnetic Field, a value known as Bz. If Bz points north the aurora tends to be quiet. If Bz points south, the IMF and Earth's magnetic field can connect and more impressive auroral displays are likely to be seen.

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

As we approached station, there was little sign of any significant activity with just a glow being visible.

Unfortunately as the flight progressed, little else was seen apart from a subtle glow on the horizon. This turned out to be the top of the auroral oval which, on this occasion had shrunk back significantly toward the north magnetic pole of the Earth - hence our rather poor showing. Pete and Paul attempted to photograph the aurora and a number of the images taken on the Edinburgh flight are shown below. The photographs show a mostly diffuse red aurora with a very faint hint of green at the base.


Image ref: W10_1153 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: W10_1155 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: W10_1161 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: W10_1174 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.