Suomi NPP VIIRS image showing the Aurora Borealis over Canada

August 9th, 2012 |
Suomi NPP VIIRS 0.7 µm Day/Night Band, 11.45 µm IR, and 11.45-3.74 µm "fog/stratus product" images

Suomi NPP VIIRS 0.7 µm Day/Night Band, 11.45 µm IR, and 11.45-3.74 µm “fog/stratus product” images

A comparison of AWIPS images of the Suomi NPP VIIRS 0.7 µm Day/Night Band (DNB), the 11.45 µm IR channel, and the 11.45-3.74 µm “fog/stratus product” (above) showed well-defined signatures of the aurora borealis (or “Northern Lights”) across central Canada on 09 August 2012. Comparison with the corresponding 11.45 µm IR channel image and the 11.45-3.74 µm “fog/stratus product” confirmed that the brighter DNB features (the wide west-to-east oriented band that stretched across Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario, as well as the separate more complex feature over northern Manitoba) were indeed signatures of the aurora, and not high-level or low-level cloud features.

The Auroral Oval map from the Space Weather Prediction Center  (below) showed that the southern edge of the auroral oval extended far southward across Canada at that time.

Space Weather Prediction Center auroral oval map

Space Weather Prediction Center auroral oval map

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