An aurora in  Moscow, Russia. Photo

 Image 1  of 2

An aurora in Moscow?

 Is it an aurora? Moscow, Russia. Photo-bear.com
What is this?  Is it  an aurora?  Moscow, Russia,  12.17.2012.
Photo by photo-bear.com

An aurora in Moscow, Russia. Photo-bear.com
Aurora in Moscow

An aurora and the snow. Moscow, Russia. Photo-bear.com
Aurora & a snow

Light in the sky. Moscow, Russia. Photo-bear.com
Light in the sky

December, 17. 2012. The strange weather conditions in Moscow.  Is it an aurora? It looks very nice, but what is it?
It was in Lytkarino, a small town near Moscow, 12.17. 2012.
It was cold December night,  -20'C.  It was snowing, very small snow, like a frosty dust. And suddenly huge pillars of light appear in the sky. They appeared and disappeared again, getting brighter, and then went out. What was it? I do not know. But it was very interesting!

Lytkarino located in a large forest. There are no houses, no lit streets in that side, where you see the pillars of light.
About 7 kilomeres - wood, nothing more. After 7 - 8 miles there is not lighted trail and wasteland. Where are some small villages near the trail in that side, but all of them are very far!

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
Aurora. Photo from Wikipedia

Aurora, australis panorama. Photo from Wikipedia
Aurora, australis panorama. Photo from Wikipedia

"An aurora is a natural light display in the sky particularly in the high latitude (Arctic and Antarctic) regions, caused by the collision of energetic charged particles with atoms in the high altitude atmosphere. The charged particles originate in the magnetosphere and solar wind and, on Earth, are directed by the Earth's magnetic field into the atmosphere. Aurora is classified as diffuse or discrete aurora. Most aurorae occur in a band known as the auroral zone, which is typically 3° to 6° in latitudinal extent and at all local times or longitudes. The auroral zone is typically 10° to 20° from the magnetic pole defined by the axis of the Earth's magnetic dipole.
During a geomagnetic storm, the auroral zone will expand to lower latitudes"

It was a geomagnetic storm that night!!!
It was an Aurora in Moscow!


Aurora Forecast for Monday, December 17, 2012

Aurora Forecast for Monday, December 17, 2012
On this map the area of possible (but not the best) aurora visibility extends to 61° north latitude. During the magnetic storm the aurora can be seen at 20° to the south! Moscow latitude is 55°.

"Forecast: Auroral activity will be moderate. Weather permitting, moderate displays will be visible low on the horizon as far south as Sundsvall, Sweden and Arkhangelsk, Russia."   (Arkhangelsk latitude is 64°)

But... It was a geomagnetic storm that night!
So, no wonder that in the midst of a storm (4:00 am Moscow time) aurora was visible even in Moscow!
More precisely, near Moscow, where there is no light from lamps and cars.