30 Jun '17, 10pm

#CLIMATE #p2 Colorful Clouds Glow Over Virginia

After several launch attempts since May that were often scrubbed because of weather, the skies were finally clear enough for a NASA Terrier-Improved Malemute sounding rocket to blast off at 4:25 a.m. Eastern Time on June 29, 2017. Soon after the launch from Wallops Flight Facility (Virginia), puffs of color emerged high in the night sky over the Mid-Atlantic coast. These artificial clouds glowed momentarily red-green and then faded into blue and violet as they drifted in the ionosphere . This upper layer of Earth’s atmosphere extends from 80 to 600 kilometers (50 to 360 miles) above the surface, and it is full of charged particles that get bombarded by solar and cosmic radiation . In the course of the eight-minute flight, the sounding rocket ejected ten canisters about the size of a soft drink can as part of a test of a new multi-canister ejection system. Once separated fr...

Full article: https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=90497&...

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Colorful Clouds Glow Over Virginia

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