Private Northern Lights Chasing in Svolvær – Lofoten – Duration about 5 hours

Get the unforgettable experience of a Northern Lights chase in Lofoten with a private local guide and driver. Your guide will take you to where you have the best opportunity to see the astonishing Northern Lights by a comfortable minivan. You will learn how to take wonderful and stunning shots of the Queen of the Arctic, how to use your tripod properly and how to set up the camera.

You will introduced, by your guide, to the mystery of the northern lights and the impact they have had for centuries on local populations, scientists and philosophers.

The guide and staff will be at your disposal for the entire excursion. A comfortable car or minivan will be used around the archipelago. All photos will be sent to customers via mail. Warm coffee & tea, chocolate and biscuits will be offered you during the whole trip, and we will provide pick up and drop off at your hotel.

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Northern Lights is a light phenomenon that occurs when energetic particles are ejected from the Sun toward Earth.

Northern Lights Norway Aurora boralis

It is a spectacular sight! It occurs in the upper polar atmosphere, between 80 km and rarely over 500 km above the Earth, when electrons and protons collide with the atmosphere gas. This gas is supplied energy as transmitted in the form of light. The light output comes mainly from atoms and molecules in the atmosphere and not from the primary particles.

The northern lights appear in many different forms. The colors of the northern lights is a line spectrum covering the entire range from ultraviolet to infrared. Colors an instance of aurora comprises are determined by the energy level of the particles and the composition of the atmosphere gas. The dominant colors in the part of the color spectrum we can see, green, red and blue. Incidence and intensity of the northern lights are in turn controlled by activity in Sola. Earth’s magnetic field and atmosphere determine how on Earth Northern Lights occur.

The Latin name for the northern lights is the aurora borealis. The same phenomenon is called Southern Lights, or aurora australis, when it occurs in the southern hemisphere, and a generic term for both aurorae.
The Northern Lights are caused by electrically charged particles from the sun. When the particles penetrating the atmosphere, they will collide with the electrically neutral atmosphere gas, which is heated and ionized, i.e. electrons turns away so that ions are formed and free electrons. A small portion of the energy of the incoming particles, however, will also be used to increase the internal energy of atmospheric particles participating in the collision process. This occurs when electrons are brought into paths which represent a higher energy level than the ground state. In this excited energy state is not stable particle. Gas type determine how long a particle can remain unexcited. This varies from fractions of a second to a few hundred seconds. When the particles go down to a stable level, emitted energy in the form of electromagnetic radiation, such as one or more photons. The wavelength (color) of the light depends on the gas type and eksitasjonsnivå.

The sun is the source of a continuous stream of electrically charged particles, solar wind. In interaction between the solar wind and Earth’s magnetic field is formed a “magnetic cavity” around Earth, the magnetosphere, where the solar wind does not penetrate. However, there are gaps in the magnetic sheath in polarkløftene on dayside and tail region on the night side. Here need plasma in and are guided by the magnetic field into the polar regions in both the south and north. This gives the weak tranquil northern lights under undisturbed conditions. The solar wind is however very variable. There occurs high-speed plasma flows from the corona holes and plasma clouds with increased density and speed, output from other active areas Sola. When such gust of solar wind comes into the Earth, it will bring changes in the magnetosphere, with strong currents, disturbances in the magnetic field, increasing link between solar wind and magnetospheric plasma and acceleration of particles.

The direction of the magnetic field the solar wind carries with it is also important in the link between the solar wind and the magnetosphere. Søroverrettet field, ie a field that has a direction opposite of land area provides better coupling than a north-oriented fields.

The explosive release of an auroral starts in the tail region of the magnetosphere. In processes that govern this, electrical currents and coupling of magnetic field lines essential elements. The result is that a large plasma cloud is accelerated inward toward the Earth in the tail region. When the cloud hit the closed magnetic field lines, it will be guided along these, both the northern and southern polar regions, into the atmosphere. Here the particles will give the Northern Lights, and along with this increased ionization, electrical currents, magnetic field interference and heating of the ionosphere.

Northern Lights and the other ionosfæreforstyrrelsene accompanying this, have thus originated in two different processes: one that is directly driven by the solar wind, and another representing an explosive release of energy stored in the magnetosphere.

Northern Lights is thus a visible manifestation of the energy link between the solar wind and the magnetosphere and the subsequent processes in the magnetosphere.

Location
Management of aurora particles from Earth’s magnetic field determines where on Earth we will get the Northern Lights. The distinction between open and closed magnetic field lines indicate the area where the particles get into the atmosphere. This interface will be imaged as an oval in the ionosphere around the magnetic poles. Because of the pressure solar wind exerts on the magnetic field, the oval being slightly shifted towards the dark side. Looking at a snapshot of the distribution of the northern lights, this will therefore primarily lie in such an oval belt, the auroral oval. On the night side is oval about 23 degrees from the magnetic poles (67 degrees magnetic latitude), while it is about 15 degrees from the poles (75 degrees magnetic latitude) on the dayside. The width of the oval varies from 1-2 degrees in dagsektoren and 5-10 degrees in the night sector, depending on the activity level.

Northern Lights Oval is in a fixed position in space relative to the sun. Earth will rotate under the oval with the geographic polar axis as the rotation axis, so that a place on Earth with magnetic latitude 67 degrees will be below the oval in the midnight sector and on the equator next day. In the European part will auroral oval walk along the coast of Troms and Finnmark at night, while the day is over Svalbard. The location of the oval is changing, however, with solar activity. At high activity expanded oval so that the Northern Lights move toward lower widths and oval are also wider.

Inside the auroral oval will almost always have the northern lights, but it can at times be weak and inconspicuous. At the equator side of the oval they disappear quickly. Inside the oval, inside the polar cap, reduced aurora activity, but even here there are relatively often aurora. The light is weaker, and the shapes are different than in the oval. The strongest and most active northern lights are in the midnight sector of the oval.

Looking statistically how the occurrence of the northern lights spread over the Earth, we find that the maximum is in a circular zone centered at a distance of 23 degrees from the geomagnetic pole, with a width of about 10 degrees. This area is called the auroral zone. Here you will be clearly visible aurora more than 50 percent of all nights, even in periods of low solar activity. Northern Lights zone is really just a delineating location midnight sector of the auroral oval as the Earth rotates 360 degrees during this within a day.

Height
The energy of the primary particles determines how far down in the atmosphere particles will penetrate and thus how high northern lights located. Swede Carl Stormer pioneered the mapping of auroral arcs. He developed a photographic method with parallaktiske measurements. Northern Lights was photographed simultaneously from two or more locations spaced 20-100 kilometers. Featured aurora structures were identified on the images and localized to the starry sky. Thereafter, the elevation angle against the selected Northern Lights form determined and when the distance between the observation points were known, one could calculate the height of the Northern Lights trig. Stormer certain height for the area with maximum light emission and for under and over the northern lights.

His height calculations involving more than 14,000 measurement points. They showed that the northern lights at night mainly have maximum intensity in height range 100-120 kilometers. The light intensity decreases rapidly below the maximum height. The bottom edge of the northern lights may exceptionally go down to 85 kilometers. On the upper side decreases light more gradually with height. Nordlys height varies through the day and for different aurora forms. Beam structures extending higher than bows and ribbons, and often go up to 200-300 km altitude. Dayside aurora is usually at altitudes of 150-200 kilometers. Stormers photographic height regulations have now been replaced with direct and more detailed measurements from rockets, but they largely confirm Stormers results.

Shape
When you see an active aurora, one gets the impression that it constantly changes appearance and location, but it is part of basic shapes and structures that recur. Most aurora risers can be manufactured as an assembly of such elemental forms.

The most common aurora forms are bows and ribbons, both going across the sky in magnetic east-west direction. Bows are usually calm and regular in shape, while bands can have large structures also folded. Both bows and ribbons may act individually or as several parallel forms. Rays are narrow aurora structures that can occur in isolation or in larger accumulations. Often, they also form pleats located partially above each other. This is called draperies and it was this Northern Lights form included in the logo for the Olympics in Lillehammer in 1994.

Within bows and ribbons can also see beam structure. The beams in the northern lights are parallel to the magnetic field lines and will thus stand almost vertically in the polar regions. Perspective Effect may provide a completely different impression. An example of this is the most striking aurora form, the crown, where the northern lights emanating from a single point in the sky, forming a crown of light. This is essentially a draperiform occurring near the magnetic zenith, i.e. in the direction of the magnetic field line through the observation place. When an accumulation aurora rays reaches the zenith, it will to an observer on the ground look as if they come from one point in the sky, since field lines leading up to this point.

Other basic shapes in the Northern Lights is diffuse stains and surfaces, and large spiral structures with dimensions of between 10 and 100 kilometers. On the microscale level are also very small helical structures that rotate fast and in the opposite direction of the major spiral structures.

The most dynamic and varying aurora occurs in magnetic noon sector. Bows and ribbons can be seen at any time in the afternoon and early evening, while stains and surfaces, often with pulsations, often acting on the morning side.

Dayside aurora is characterized by quiet arches. It is usually weaker than the eye can perceive as visible light. It must be registered with the delicate optical instruments. But also in the daytime Northern Lights we can see the strong rays and discrete structures. This shows that even in polarkløftene may be mechanisms to accelerate the low energy solar wind particles so they get energy against what one can have a night the Northern Lights.

Over polar cap has the Northern Lights a different character than in the auroral oval. Diffuse spots and areas dominate. Often one can also see faint aurora arcs that cross polar cap in the direction from day to night sector. Strong polka lott aurora with arches that cross over the pole, often called the theta aurora, because the arc along with the auroral oval is reminiscent of the Greek letter theta,