The Northern Lights with GoPro

04.11.12


Last night we set out to see the Northern Lights with a special bent. A group of scientists (I’ll name drop later) set out helium weather balloons equipped with GoPro Cameras in order to get video of the Aurora Borealis from Space.

It’s mind boggling.

Essentially the GoPro cameras will be 20 miles up into the atmosphere recording the greatest light show science can provide. The launch can be done for about a thousand dollars and the cameras get an incredibly high quality. Higher in fact than any that’s been recorded from space.

I’m operating on four hours of sleep as we were watching the northern lights until 3am and then we were up bright and early for dogsledding. I’ve got a tiny break right now and then we’ve got a two mile hike (snowshoeing maybe?) to retrieve the cameras.

I am so excited to share the GoPro footage with you but in the interim here’s a video of last night’s display. Mike Kofsky from the Wall Street Journal took 3,000 one second exposure images and then threaded them together into 45 seconds of majesty.

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6 responses to “The Northern Lights with GoPro”

  1. Jennifer says:

    I need Mike Kofsky to come give me a lesson on how to use the GoPro better. I kept complaining that mine was broken but, as it turns out, it’s just me. :/

  2. I love you Jessica …you are my new hero for sharing this adventure with me…#vicariousliving

  3. I’m extremely jealous of this! My husband works up there and is always telling me how beautiful it is and sending me pictures. I’d love to see it first hand. 

  4. The JackB says:

    How do you watch that and not feel like this tiny being on this magical big blue marble. There is so much to do and see but not nearly enough time to do it.

  5. “Auroral mechanismAuroras result from emissions of photons in the Earth’s upper atmosphere, above 80 km (50 mi), from ionized nitrogen atoms regaining an electron, and oxygen and nitrogen atoms returning from an excited state to ground state. They are ionized or excited by the collision of solar wind and magnetospheric particles being funneled down and accelerated along the Earth’s magnetic field lines; excitation energy is lost by the emission of a photon, or by collision with another atom or molecule:”Unbelievably beautiful…definition via “wikipedia”.

  6. Desi says:

    So beautiful.  I live in Northern Alberta, so I’ve seen some pretty amazing northern lights’ shows.  This video is gorgeous.  It was a pleasure to share it with my kids.

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