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Author Topic: Photographing Auroras  (Read 8150 times)

canonwhore

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Photographing Auroras
« on: March 07, 2012, 04:37:46 PM »
Just wondering if anyone here has any experience photographing auroras?

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/News030712-X1.5.html

Nasa states the solar flares should reach earth around 01:25EST or where I am 00:25 MST (Calgary). I am hoping to go and get some good shots if anyone knows of a good place?

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Photographing Auroras
« on: March 07, 2012, 04:37:46 PM »

YellowJersey

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2012, 09:27:02 PM »
Nope, I don't have any experience. But, if you're going to shoot the aurora.... could I come? I live in Calgary too but don't have a car. Shoot me a PM if you're interested.

 You might also want to check out a guy I know on DeviantArt who shoots the auroras all the time up in Fort Smith. He posts his camera data for most/all of his shots... should give you a good starting point.  http://octoberlife.deviantart.com/gallery/

wellfedCanuck

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2012, 09:37:41 PM »
Just wondering if anyone here has any experience photographing auroras?

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/News030712-X1.5.html

Nasa states the solar flares should reach earth around 01:25EST or where I am 00:25 MST (Calgary). I am hoping to go and get some good shots if anyone knows of a good place?
If you're in Calgary, you're going to be an  hour late... 01:25 EST is 23:25 MST.
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underjammer

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2012, 09:53:32 PM »
There was a neat article on dpreview a few months ago, actually!  : D

http://www.dpreview.com/articles/8217618174/auroral-photography-a-guide-to-capturing-the-northern-lights

Aaand, here's an site that predicts where the aurora will be and who can see it, etc..  (Though don't let this discourage you from looking, if you're outside the predicted area!!)

http://helios.swpc.noaa.gov/ovation/

The main site is http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/ but it said the system is down, and redirected me to the (nicer) Ovation one..  : D

And here's another one that gives a broader range over time.  This is the page I was looking for when I came across that nice Ovation one.

http://www.gi.alaska.edu/AuroraForecast/NorthAmerica/2012/03/07
« Last Edit: March 07, 2012, 10:08:51 PM by underjammer »

AJ

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2012, 10:24:25 PM »
Another Calgarian here!

The exact timing of auroras is difficult to predict.  Particles coronal mass ejection should hit Earth between Thursday morning and Friday night.  Thursday night is probably your best chance.

I shot this one at Buffalo Lake this summer.  I had brought my tripod but misplaced my quickrelease  :(
So this shot was taken braced.  Canon 7D, 17-55/2.8 IS.  Thank goodness for high-iso and IS.



I have better aurora shots but they are on slides

As for places to go - well you could drive out of town but it's going to be bright everywhere with the full moon blazing.  I'm thinking about trying Scotman's Hill.

edit to add: thanks for the links Underjammer!!  Karma comin' your way.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2012, 10:33:49 PM by AJ »

Caps18

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2012, 11:14:00 PM »
If it is not windy, find a lake and shoot the reflection of the auroras on the lake.  It might be a long drive to Lake Louise...but it would be worth it.

http://www.aurorahunter.com/harvest-hunt.php

The Moon will help light up the foreground.

If you don't want to go far, find a row of trees and get a photo like this
http://www.desktopnexus.com/dl/inline/520566/1280x720/Aurora-Boreal-Forest.jpg?nocache=736452

http://www.canadiannaturephotographer.com/auroral.html

Good luck.  I wish I was up there.
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canonwhore

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2012, 12:29:22 AM »
Thanks everyone for your suggestions. Wellfedcanuk I realized that the time is actually 11:25pm after I posted the initial post. It's a clear night an I'm holding for a nice display. Fingers crossed.

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2012, 12:29:22 AM »

canonwhore

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2012, 02:22:49 AM »
So I spent about an hour and a half and no aurora. At the moment the forecast is showing nothing but they are predicting some activity tomorrow late evening.

http://www.spaceweather.gc.ca/current-actuelle/short-court/sfst-4-eng.php

Depending in the prediction tomorrow afternoon I might try again.

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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2012, 05:37:34 AM »
I read about it on the news today, they said it would start 'around midnight tonight' (in australia, so 3 hours left) and last about 24 hours. Won't see it from where I am, but they reckon there'd be a view in Hobart (a view that would be covered in cloud, unfortunately).

Given that it's caused by the biggest solar flare (or was it a CME?) in the last 5 years, would it muck up a digital camera, has anyone ever heard of small electronics like cameras getting blasted by flares? (yes, I know we're well protected down here, satellites have to worry more). I know what happened in canada about 30 years ago, and i'm planning on turning my pc off overnight for the hell of it (for a change, it normally runs 24/7), just in case...
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Re: Photographing Auroras
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2012, 05:37:34 AM »