Known as The Northern Lights,or officially, The Aurora Borealis.They are a magical light show in the skies.I was first overwhelmed by this sight in January 2000 in Kemi,Northern Finland.The first time I saw this night time show I was literally left bewildered and Breathless.The sun gives off high-energy charged particles (also called ions) that travel out into space at speeds of 300 to 1200 kilometres per second. A cloud of such particles is called a plasma. The stream of plasma coming from the sun is known as the solar wind. As the solar wind interacts with the edge of the earth’s magnetic field, some of the particles are trapped by it and they follow the lines of magnetic force down into the ionosphere, the section of the earth’s atmosphere that extends from about 60 to 600 kilometres above the earth’s surface. When the particles collide with the gases in the ionosphere they start to glow, producing the spectacle that we know as the auroras, northern and southern. The array of colours consists of red, green, blue and violet.
The Northern Lights are constantly in motion because of the changing interaction between the solar wind and the earth’s magnetic field. The solar wind commonly generates up to 100,000 megawatts of electricity in an auroral display and this can cause interference with power lines, radio and television broadcasts and satellite communications. By studying the auroras, scientists can learn more about the solar wind, how it affects the earth’s atmosphere and how the energy of the auroras might be exploited for useful purposes.
Aurora Borealis can be seen from the beginning of September until April (but not every night). It isn’t possible to see Aurora Borealis in the summer (May-August) because there is too much light then (April may even be too late). We have the midnight sun in the summer.Should you yourself decide you wish to see this Spectacular show,I rcommend travelling to the more Northern parts of Finland.Though saying that, I have actually seen them just outside Helsinki.Inner city areas are not such a good veiwing platform due to the City Lights.Should you wish to make a visit I can Recommend a Great place in The Northern part of Finland.……OH,The time has flown by.Its Vappu in 40 minutes and I should be on a boat to a small Island approx 40Km.I shall be away until Sunday,However I may take the laptop?