Newly discovered exotic aurora looks like glowing green ‘sand dunes’

According tomedia CNET, many people marvel at the gorgeous beauty of the aurora. Recently, however, a new form of “light show” has been discovered in some way. Amateur aurora photographers recorded a new form of aurora known as the Dunes for the first time in Finland in October 2018. They turned to scientists, who said the dunes were not only previously unknown aurora phenomena, but could also help researchers observe and study invisible and mysterious atmospheric waves.

Newly discovered exotic aurora looks like glowing green 'sand dunes'

“This is the first time we’ve actually observed atmospheric waves passing through the aurora, which have never been done before,” said Minna Palmroth, a space physicist at the University of Helsinki. “

Palmroth has previously written a guide to observing the aurora, and was told about the “sand dunes” aurora in 2018. “Some people see ‘sand dunes’ in the sky and they tell me that this aurora form is not included in my book, ” says Mr Palmroth. “

Newly discovered exotic aurora looks like glowing green 'sand dunes'

Newly discovered exotic aurora looks like glowing green 'sand dunes'

Amateurs seem to have captured the shape of the aurora, which aurora scientists have never captured before. Although the aurora often appears in the form of a curtain, the dunes stretch horizontally and the green “fine tentacles” extend to the horizon. Palmroth, along with other physicists and amateur observers, collected more data on the phenomenon and came up with theories about the formation of the “sand dunes” aurora, a new study published Tuesday in the journal AGU Advances.

They suspect that the “sand dunes” aurora is actually a visible representation of atmospheric waves. The region may be affected by changes in energy from the lower atmosphere and the sun, which emits high-energy particles that produce aurora when they collide with the Earth’s magnetic field. “Sand dunes provide new opportunities for studying the coupling of the lower/mid-atmosphere with the thermal and ionospheres,” the study said. Energy fluctuations in these atmospheres may also have an indirect impact on the movement of satellites and spacecraft.

“Different aurora forms are like fingerprints,” says Palmroth. If you see a form of aurora, you can basically know what’s going on in space from that form. “

The “sand dunes” aurora may be related to a specific type of atmospheric wave called mesospereric bores, which occurs in hard-to-reach atmospheric regions because it is too high for airplanes and balloons and too low for satellites. “It’s a whole new topic,” Palmroth said. We’re excited about that. “