March 23, 2012 15:41
Northern Lights, is mainly observed in the polar regions of our planet — the sight fascinating. in the frost that "bleaches" is a natural phenomenon, it is waving in the wind like huge white curtains. if the same phenomenon starts glowing multicolored, begins to overflow the blue-green with a splash splashes of pink and red — any fireworks "rest." It seems that in the sky dance languages bright magical flame. Distance from the eye conceals the scale of what is happening: each of the fire belt, which then turns a woven, patterned cloth, then quickly moves to a new horizon, up to 1600 km long and 160 km wide.
Light "excited" atoms.
Northern Lights takes place on Earth. But this magical performance choreographed by the name Sun. Around our star is constantly pulsing cloud of superhot gas, called the solar corona: it always throws into space in all directions of the particles and fragments of atoms. Tiny shells fly in space at a speed of 960 km / s — this is the famous solar wind. From time to time the crown explodes swirl particle emitting very powerful streams of hot fragments, and then the solar wind is gaining hurricane strength.
When the solar storm reaches Earth, he encounters a barrier magnetic field of our planet. The magnetic pull of the earth begins to pull the charged solar particles into long "rays" along the field lines. Pole like invisible vacuum pull these "rays" on themselves.
The Earth's atmosphere is composed mainly of nitrogen and oxygen. Intruding into it, the electrons and protons ejected by the Sun, begin to collide with the molecules of the gases. In these "fighting battles," some of the electrons of the atoms lose, others — "excited" to give extra energy. When the atom "calm" after a swift attack, returns to normal energy state, it emits a photon of light. Losing electrons, nitrogen molecules emit blue and violet light. But if the nitrogen molecule "excited" without loss of an electron, it emits rays of the red part of the spectrum. When attacking the solar wind on the oxygen molecule electron loss never happens. But the molecule is "excited" and then emits photons of red and green light.
At the north pole aurora blazes almost every night. Phenomenon, in fact, observed in the polar regions of the Earth in what is called an oval area, which extends to the south by the stronger "blows" the solar wind. In the Northern Hemisphere oval usually covers the northern regions of Scandinavia, the most northern parts of Canada and the U.S., as well as Siberia. In the polar oval storms can spread even to the latitude of Central Europe. In the Nordic countries and in the Arctic region of North America the phenomenon is observed from 20 to 200 times a year. 5-10 times a year, the Northern Lights latitude visits Paris and London. One day, a lot of frightened residents, even the northern lights blazed in the sky above Mexico.
Dance of the Gods.
Ancient peoples of the North, of course, tied a grand spectacle as the aurora borealis, with the life of the gods. In Norse mythology, for example, is often referred to Bifrost — flaming arch bridge over which the gods could descend from heaven to earth. In other traditions, the auroral rays are perceived as "lights Valkyries" — virgin warriors who hover on winged horses over the battlefield and choose the bravest warriors to pick them died on the battlefield, on the feasts of the gods in the heavenly palace — Valhalla. Northern Lights, Norwegian runes say, this gloss metal armor, which are chained Valkyrie. Another Norwegian version: Northern Lights — the celestial dance of souls prematurely dead maidens. In any interpretations appearance of the northern lights invariably perceived as a harbinger of Norwegians bad weather: for bright splashes necessarily then follow the bitter cold, heavy snow and blistering cold veter.Finskaya mythology determine the polarity of the role of the celestial phenomenon of the river, which denotes the boundary between the realms of the living and the dead, like Styx in the mythology of the ancient Greeks. Only Styx — the river is dark and gloomy, and the Finnish Rouge burns bright lights. Simpler version blames foxes that hunt in the hills and scratching the sides of the rock, but with such ferocity that the sparks fly on the sky, turning in the northern lights.
Eskimos who live on the shores of Hudson Bay in North America, still believe that the northern lights — is the shadow spirits, who play in something like football heaven, using instead the ball walrus skull. They believe that if you want, you can control: a sharp whistle, like a referee in the field urging players to start the game, "includes" Northern Lights, and "extinguish" it can be loud clapping.
Unlike the Norwegians, the Eskimos in general regard the northern lights as a harbinger of good weather, which is sure to bring happy held a "match" perfume. True, the Eskimos living in Point Barrow, Alaska, always saw in this phenomenon a clear threat, and if they had to go out of home, be sure to take a gun for defense. Common among them is the belief: "Who stares at the Northern Lights, will soon go mad!"
Some Native American tribes believe that the northern lights — this is the light of torches in the hands of the spirits that seek the dead hunters. Australian Aborigines in their mythology are now closer to the Eskimos, considering this phenomenon cheerful dance gods. Incidentally, a number of experts believe that the Chinese and European faith in the fire-breathing dragon is also associated with the phenomenon of the aurora. Like, the legendary Battle of St. George, patron saint of England, with the dragon — a romantic vision of the natural phenomenon, quite common in these latitudes. In the Middle Ages, by the way, the north magnetic pole is located far to the east, so the northern lights are often seen not only the inhabitants of Scandinavia, but also large areas of northern Russia and northern China. Chroniclers to describe this awesome spectacle of imagination, thought it some giants battle in heaven, and on earth flying from the crucible of the great battle of fire spear.