Red Sprites over Czech Republic/ Poland 

Photographed on the 29th of June 2022, 23:17 CEST from Fuerstenfeldbruck/ Germany

Th.Boeckel



Camera Position: Fuerstenfeldbruck, Germany in apprx. 45° NE direction

Red Sprites over Czech Republic/ Poland (Region: Prague / Wroclaw)

 Distance of the Red Sprite, apprx. 440 km ( +/- 50km)

Red Sprites over Czech Republic and Poland 29 June 22 by Th. Boeckel

normal exposure

Red Sprites over Czech Republic and Poland 29 June 22 by Th. Boeckel 

more bright and higher-contrast

Strong thunderstorm cells over the Czech and Poland area (Prague / Wroclaw) were detected about 440 km away from Fürstenfeldbruck by Sat24 (see below).

But the best was, these bright oversized red sprites were easily noticed with the naked eye!

This was a very seldom observance event.

After about 5 years of most moderate sprite photo sessions, I finally managed to photograph a really massive bright red sprite.

Red Sprites über Deutschland und Frankreich 26_06_22 by Th. Boeckel

normal exposure

Red Sprites über Tschechien Polen 29_06_22 by Th. Boeckel

more bright and higher-contrast

 colour corrected

Another two bright red sprite 20 min later.

Red Sprites over Czech Republic and Poland 29 June 22 by Th. Boeckel

normal exposure

Red Sprites over Czech Republic and Poland 29 June 22 by Th. Boeckel

more bright & colour corrected

Red Sprites over Czech Republic and Poland 29 June 22 by Th. Boeckel   Red Sprites über Tschechien Polen 29_06_22 by Th. Boeckel

normal exposure 

Red Sprites over Czech Republic and Poland 29 June 22 by Th. Boeckel

more bright & colour corrected

Sony a7III, Samyang 85 mm, f1.4, ISO 12800, video capture 1/13 sec

Red Sprites over Czech Republic and Poland 29 June 22 by Th. Boeckel

An now all together parade. A composite during ~ 20 min. (more brighten and higher-contrast)


VIDEO


weather Situation_26_06_22_ Sat24 u.c

Weather Situation on the 29th of June 2022, 23:20 CEST (Central European Summer Time)

In courtesy of Sat24


About Red Sprites

A red sprites appearance lasts from ~20 to ~100 milliseconds, but can be very bright and visible to the naked eye in dark areas.However, the brightness remains several times below a lightning discharge. On average, red sprites appear at an altitude of about 40 - 90 km from the stratosphere (<50km) through the mesosphere to the thermosphere (>80km). Sightings up to an altitude of 100 km in the thermosphere are also possible. The height dimension of a single sprite varies from ~10 km to ~60 km, the width can possibly reach 5 - 30 km. However, some 'sprite walls' or 'multiple sprites' can exceed 100km horizontally.

But how does the rare luminous phenomena come to this name, when they were discovered and what is the reason of origin?

Until 1989, the existence of Red Sprites was generally denied because only jet pilots announced sporadic sightings. Here they reaped rather grumpy and sarcastic reactions :-(. Thus, many sightings have been omitted. 1989 the first Red Sprite photos did succeed, but due to the not yet advanced camera technology the results were scientifically useless. 1991 the astronauts of the former Space shuttle mission succeeded photographically to capture this phenomenon specifically the first time from space. These photos served as the first meaningful evidence. Afterwards high-tech peppered research aircrafts were inserted by very costly experiments from the NASA and NOAA, which should explain and analyze these phenomena further. After this efforts yielded no results for months, and the researchers literally get messed around with this situation, the called these discharges almost mischievously 'Sprites'. But after a while and patient effords impressive high speed filmings succeeded.  

By the way, there is still no definitive plausible explanation for the origin of Red Sprites, but there are countless theories. One theory explains that large energetic thunderstorm cells charge prior to lightning discharge, forming a (-e) leveling layer over the top of the cell. The initiator is always a violent positive! cloud-to-ground lightning which causes charge shifts (+) in the upper areas of the thunderstorm cell. Now the overlying (-e) layer is preserved longer and faces the (+) charged upper ionosphere (>90km). An quasi oversized electrostatic field is created for a short time according to the principle of a plate capacitor, which produces the surge, the so-called red sprite. This electromagnetic impulse ionizes nitrogen atoms from the stratosphere (<50km) to the upper thermosphere (90km) and causes them to glow through fluorescence (cold plasma, fluorescent tube principle or polar light).

In addition, another theory explains that the luminous phenomenon could be caused or supported by the cosmic gamma radiation that always occurs in the ionosphere. The cosmic gamma rays probably produce an (-e) chain reaction by collision. Thus a high-energy ion-electron cloud (-e) which reaches into the upper thermosphere (90km) arises, whereby the typical and unique sprite forms appears. There is also a scientific report in the Washington post which explain some theories.


More red sprites info

    (Sprite link)


Red Sprites 2107 by Th Boeckel

All Red Sprites & Auroras

Red Sprites 2107 by Th Boeckel


 

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