Hot Pink Glow In Night Sky

Not sure just how local this may be, but does anyone else in the Delaware Valley or N. Md area recall seeing a hot-pink glow in the NW sky tonight, Mon 11/05 at 9:30 EST? It resembles zodiacal light, but it does not follow the zodiac. Perhaps there is a large fire somewhere? (I’m in N. Md. area near Newark, DE) Very odd!

Frequent skywatcher,

  • Jinx

It could be a big fire, or it could be an Aurora Borealis (sp?) I think it’s the right season for those things.

Delaware seems a bit south for the aurora, IMHO. I can sometimes see a very faint one here in northern Montana, and Delmarva is that much farther south. The auroras I’ve seen also tend towards the blue-green portion of the spectrum.

I also think a fire big enough to make the sky glow appreciably in an area as inhabited as the US East Coast would be making some major news. Heck, the fires in the relatively uninhabited areas of Montana made front-page news.

Which is all a way of saying I have no idea what could be causing it.

I considered an aurora, but quickly ruled it out because (to my knowledge) an aurora tends to eminate from the pole or polar region of the sky downward. This is eminating upward from the NW horizon…I’ll go with fire.

  • Jinx

Good chance it was an aurora. There’s a storm in progress.

Yup, it must be! It is filling the whole Northern sky now extending both NW and NE…with pinkish rays extending to the zenith - varying in intensity! Cool! A first for me!

  • Jinx

Thank god my neighbor was out to point them out to me. I was looking in vain for something right at the horizon, but it’s really huge pinkish streaks directly overhead, for me here in MI. Looks like the milky way, only bigger and wilder.

I saw it from Philadelphia, looking West, circa 10:00 PM. What I saw was definitely an Aurora. I saw the enormous reddish flame (reaching past the zenith at some points), but also a green glow near the horizon. Possibly you were too far East for this, though. One of my fellow astronomy students was observing a variable star at the time. To do this, one alternates between measuring the blank sky, and measuring your star. Well, suddenly her sky readings shot up, bringing attention to the enormous glow in the Western sky.

Damnation. Everytime we’ve gotten a good storm in the past couple of years it’s been overcast in New England.

I live in Kenai, Alaska, about 60 miles south of Anchorage; and I can tell you we are having one of the most fan-freaking-tastic displays of the Northern Lights I have ever seen. They are directly overhead, which is unusual for this latitude, and red is the dominant color, which is also rare. The whole sky is lit up, and there are undualting curtains of red and blue directly overhead. Here is a link to the NOAA Aurora Borealis Activity website, which rates this display at a 10. It looks like the aurora should be visible all across the northern tier of states, just look to the north in an area away from the city lights. The solar storms that cause the Aurora Borealis usually last for several days, so watch for it tomorrow as well.

Hee hee :slight_smile:

I was going to post a MPSIMS thread about it…has been a loooooooooooong time since I’ve seen red northern lights. Just beautiful, no?

{Thanks for the link, Fear Itself!!}

Hot pink? Nature is so tacky. F-no-no.

They were supposedly seen in Atlanta last night as well. I missed them and I’m quite disappointed-I’ve never seen them. The news was going on about them this morning when I woke up.

      • Well nuts, I posted my two cents in MPSIMS. I am in St Louis, and saw it for a little while. It did originate from the north pole from where I am. It wasn’t hot pink, it was just salmon-colored. While out driving I heard a radio DJ mention it, so I drove out to a dark enough area that I could see. I started watching it atout 9:30 from the car, and by 11:00 PM it was gone from here… - MC

Was last night the only night it’d be around? It was rather overcast most of the night here in SLC, and having never paid attention to auroras before (living mostly in southern Texas), I don’t know how long these would last, for a night or for a week or what…

The Spaceweather site (which you can subscribe to for free) will send you a daily notice of interesting facts and features on space, and whenever there’s a massive CME (coronal mass ejection) as there was a couple of days ago, you will be told that auroras are going to be likely - sometimes even at mid latitudes. The one all of you saw last night (but which I couldn’t see from suburban Chicago at 10 pm) was predicted a couple days ago when the recent CME was noted. It’s a cool site and one I’d recommend for anyone interested in seeing the northern lights.

CC, from Glen Ellyn, (W of Chicago) it was huge. Starting about 8:30 (when we were called by an astronomy geek friend in S Naperville) it was faint red/pink, mostly to the NW. By 9:30, it was all across the N horizon to directly overhead. various shades of green and red, like an undulating curtain. A first for me as well.

'Twas awesome last night! The Mrs. and I watched from the comfort of our hot tub, and actually cussed out the nearly full moon, for washing out the colors. We’re about 44 and a half degrees latitude north.

There was a blurb from a local news station crawling across the screen last night, telling people that purple and green flashes in the sky were the Northern Lights. I guess people are a little nervous about seeing lights in the sky these days.

Are you sure that it wasn’t some transcendental rational being trying to enlighten you? PK Dick was struck by a pink light back in the early 70’s. Granted, things kinda went downhill for Dick after that, but maybe you are the execption.