Why does the weather have to be so unfair! Denmark is now bathed in continuous rain and cloud cover while others in Canada and the US are taking advantage of NLC and Aurora shows! (sometimes both at the same time!!). I haven't been able to take pictures of the night sky in a week now and I am starting to get impatient. And the forecast is not even looking up for the next few days... I guess I have to make the most out of the weather and my vacation, so here I am, taking care of paperwork and administrative work, along with image processing and video making. Speaking of video I am starrting to have my share of NLC shots by now and I wanted to make a little explanatory video about it. Here it comes and this is how it goes:
Have you ever noticed bright and glowing clouds in the clear summer night when all other clouds are dark? This phenomenon is called noctilucent clouds or night glowing clouds and happens exclusively in the summer twilight between latitudes 45 and 65 degrees North or South when the sun is not so low on the horizon.
In the summer the Earth is at its farthest away position from the sun on its orbit ellipse, causing the upper layer of the atmosphere, called the mesosphere, to cool down significantly. This layer is virtually dry but very little moisture can be brought from different origins (some speculate from meteorites or shooting stars, rockets...). This moisture gets instantly frozen into super tiny ice crystals that dance and form patterns in the mesosphere currents. These particles are usually not visible to us because the sun's rays pass in front of them. But let's say some lower clouds (tropospheric clouds) were to block these rays in front leaving some back rays to illuminate the night sky? If all these conditions are present, a great spectacle of noctilucent clouds is possible for you to observe!
At three-quarters into the NLC (noctilucent clouds) season, I have gathered my best time-lapse shots and compiled them into this little documentary video. I have made a zoomed-in view, so that the viewer can see what NLC look like at wide-angle view, 35-100mm and up-close (500-600mm).
All shots were taken in Odsherred, Sjælland, Denmark in the summer 2016 with Sony alpha 7r2 and Canon EOS 70D. The lenses and post-processing techniques used are listed at the end of the video. Enjoy!