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'Impossible' orange auroras spotted in UK after solar storm slams into Earth

'Impossible' orange auroras spotted in UK after solar storm slams into Earth
Sunday, 03 December, 2023, 21:24

Rarely seen orange auroras, which are supposed to be impossible to see, and a photobombing meteor recently shone above the U.K. after a "canyon of fire" solar storm smashed into Earth, stunning new images reveal.
Photographer Graeme Whipps spotted the fiery auroras in the skies above Aberdeenshire in Scotland at around 6:00 p.m. local time on Nov. 25, reported.
The unusual hues were an "incredible sight," Whipps told They appeared during a peak of auroral activity that lasted for around one hour, he added. Whipps also snapped a meteor that streak across the sky at another point during the lightshow.

The auroras were part of a minor (G2) geomagnetic storm — a disturbance in Earth's magnetic field, or magnetosphere — that was triggered by a fast-moving cloud of magnetized plasma, known as a coronal mass ejection (CME), which smashed into Earth just before the auroras appeared.

The CME launched from a massive loop of plasma, or solar prominence, which snapped and flung off into space, leaving behind a massive valley in the solar surface known as a "canyon of fire." A similar fiery chasm was left behind by a solar eruption on Halloween.