8 December 2013
This evening the northern lights started early. Strong and moving and also high up in the sky.
Later the auroras became more faint because the density of the solar wind was low and the magnetic component more north.
Beautiful auroras typical from a coronal hole.
7 December 2013
Clear days, clear nights
It is such a pleasure to have clear days and nights again!
Although the Sun is behind the horizon we enjoy the arctic light in daytime and in the nights the auroras.
Also coming night there will be northern lights due to a big coronal hole.
3 December 2013
Beautiful auroral forms
This evening the sky cleared up and beautiful auroral forms appeared over Straumnes, Laukvik, and were dancing around us.
Aurora as a surprise!
Later this week we expect auroras due to a coronal hole.
28 November 2013
Cloudy week and low activity
After many days with cloudy weather and low northern light activity this evening the stars were visible again.
Low at the northern horizon the auroras were visible and short after the snow showers came again.
The morning after we had a beautiful white world again.
19 November 2013
For a short moment....
This evening the northern lights appeared for a short moment around 19.00 hrs. loc. time.
Clouds prevent us the rest of the evening to view the auroras although the activity was strong enough.
10 November 2013
Between the clouds
Early in the evening the auroras were visible between the clouds.
There was quite some activity for many hours but unfortunately the clouds and hail showers were also active.....
6 November 2013
Just before midnight
This evening the northern lights appeared very early, low at the northern horizon.
Some hours later again and just around midnight the auroras were most active, due to a coronal hole.
From west to east, the whole sky was enlightened.
Amazing and it is just in front of our door!
3 November 2013
Just after dinner a nice northern light bow appeared.
When we reached the beach the auroras became stronger and even the sea water glowed greenish in the dark.
For some hours we could enjoy the auroras and afterwards they gave sweet dreams too....
2 November 2013
Van der Bilt prize 2013
Today Rob received the van der Bilt prize 2013 from the
Royal Dutch Assocation for meteorology and astronomy (KNVWS)
He was honored with this prize for the efforts Rob made as a researcher of the Aurora Borealis and for popularizing this phenomenon for a wide public.
Photo: Jan Koeman
31 October 2013
Yesterday evening and tonight finally the effect of a CME approached Earth and caused beautiful auroras.
Last night the northern lights appeared between rain showers but tonight the sky was much more clear.
In front of the Polarlightcenter we could enjoy the northern lights in the west.
22 October 2013
Aurora and Jupiter
The planet Jupiter is so bright even in the moonlight.
The auroras appeared between the clouds, faint but beautiful.
We are waiting for more nights with northern lights.
The Sun is very active these days and hopefully the weather will be good....
17 October 2013
The first snow
This evening the first snow of this season fell down and changed our world in a fairy tale.
The northern lights appeared before the evening presentation started and also in between.
It is so wonderful to feel the fresh air and see the beauty of the auroras in this white landscape.
Winter is coming!
15 October 2013
Wake up service
Sometimes it is hard to make the decision to wake up your guests in the middle of the night.
At 02.45 loc.time the sky cleared up and the northern lights were visible. We had to look to the south because of the strong magnetic activity.
It is not easy to go outside from your warm bed so I took this picture from out of the window.....
8 October 2013
Just before the magnetic storm arrived beautiful auroras were visible around us. High up from east to west and in the north.
For about two hours we were outside to enjoy it.
During the magnetic storm it became cloudy again.....
7 October 2013
Sometimes it is not easy to hunt the lights.....
Cloudy days and nights and a low activity level.
This evening the auroras were visible between the clouds together with many stars and the beautiful Milky way.
Coming week a bigger chance for more activity.
Honeymoon and auroras
To be on honeymoon and searching for the northern lights is very exciting, specially when you come all the way from Hong Kong.
Our guests did and were on a beautiful location near the sea, with the sky full of stars, seeing the bright moon and a falling star.
Although the auroras were faint, those evenings will be a memory for life time.
It is great to have clear nights again. The moon is stil bright and the auroras were amazing for some moments.
This evening at 21.05 local time, we got an aurora surprise for about 10 minutes.
Around midnight the northern lights appeared again and we could see them dancing and moving from east to west and high up in the sky.
We have got a very nice autumn.
It is a pleasure to stay outside in the evening with the bright moon, the northern lights coming and going very quickly, a temperature of about 16*C and the clouds ufo-shaped.
It was like the auroras were playing with us.
At such evenings you don't want to sleep.
Faint northern lights
The moon was bright and the aurora very faint.
The huge coronal hole did not cause the expected auroras because the magnetic component (IMF) in the solar wind was not opportunely in relation to our earth magnetic field.
For more information: Spaceweather
Lucky day (evening)
This evening the northern lights appeared very early.
Yesterday evening our three guests enjoyed also the lights but tonight they are succeeding in taking beautiful pictures of the auroras.
30 August 2013
New season starts!
Tonight we were surprised to see the northern lights when the sky was still so bright!
We were so happy to see the lights again after a long summer season.
This is a good start for more beautiful auroras to come during the 7 months northern light season.
29 March 2013
This evening the auroras appeared as a watercolor painting.
Snow showers and clouds are all over but the instruments showed high activity. For some moments the sky opened up and the northern lights were visible.
20 March 2013
This evening around 22.00h local time nice auroras appeared at the northern horizon.
By my surprise, nobody else was on one of my favorits spots here in Laukvik. The little boat houses, covered with snow and surrounded by the auroras, are always a nice place to take pictures.
Tonight just after the presentation a part of the northern sky cleared up and some northern lights were visible.
This evening during a Polar low with such cold winds from the north we all stood outside to see a glimpse of the auroras.
This evening we and our guests enjoyed amazing auroras.
We did not know where to look. In all directions around the Polarlightcenter the northern lights were visible and even the northern light crown was to be seen twice.
We don't need tours or bus trips for "hunting the lights".
This picture I took looking to the east, auroras above mountain Matmora
After a cloudy week
This evening the northern lights started early at about 19.30h
Later at around 24.00h the auroras became stronger and brighter and even the pulsating auroras showed up shimmering in the late night sky and apeared as spooky white lights. Fantastic!!!
Until now we had 13 nights with nice auroras in February.
This evening around 22.00 local time we saw this nice display but soon after, it became cloudy and the magnetic activity low.
This evening our group of visitors for the northern light presentation viewed a beautiful northern light bow before they even entered the Polarlightcenter.
We had to stop the presentation again two times because the monitor showed activity. Everybody ran outside to welcome and enjoy the beautiful lights.
See also: Spaceweather
Out of the window
Last evening there was strong activity on the instruments but snow showers were hiding the northern lights.
At 2.30 hrs local time I woke up and looked out of the window.
The sky was clear again and faint coloured auroras were visible in the east and in the south and in between many bright stars.
Despite of the low speed and the low density in the solar wind this evening the auroras were dancing and moving from about
21.05 until 21. 55 hrs. local time.
Northern lights as green coloured ocean waves
In the beginning of this evening the auroras were shining through the clouds in the north and gave the impression as green waves in the Norwegian sea.
After the lecture
Just after the late afternoon lecture some northern light was visible at the northern horizon.
Some hours later the auroras became stronger and our guests were enjoying the lights and were taking some fine pictures.
This evening the sky cleared up and a faint northern light was visible. We sent an sms-alert to 23 people and low at the northern horizon the faint bow became more clear for more than one hour.
To see the auroras for the first time in your life, it is a great experience.
The northern light was still glowing from west to the east in the twinkling starry night for many many hours.
For more than two weeks the Suns activity is very low.
Where are the big Sun spots as during the last Solar maximum in 2001 and in 2002 ?
Without the expected activity here under the polar oval we have had nights with low activity northern light and where you could see soft greenish stripes and bows like last evening.
The coming days we are expecting stronger auroras due to coronal holes.
What a great present to see the northern lights at your birthday.
One of the eight nice young people from France became 24 years old and they visited us for a lecture. During the presentation several times we ran outside to see the auroras. Clouds and clear skies were changing off and on but this evening we could see bows and stripes, curtains and moving lights and even pulsating auroras..
Some of the guests stayed up until 4.00 o'clock in the morning.....
Yesterday evening there was strong northern light activity but it was very cloudy too. Later that evening and last night the clouds break and in all directions the beautiful lights were shining through.
For some moments even the northern light crown was to be seen straight above us.
Last night at 00.20 loc.time, I was already in pyjamas and after a last look out of the window great auroras were to be seen in the north, north-west. The cloudy sky had cleared up again and the northern lights lasted for about 20 minutes.
They gave sweet dreams afterwards.....
A nice bow
This evening a nice northern light bow was visible about 30* above the horizon.
When the Suns activity is low and the sky is clear often a bow is to be seen above the sea, low at the northern horizon.
Last evening around midnight the clouds disapeared in the north.
There was some activity on the instruments and we could see some nice auroras but faint due to the moonlight.
The last two weeks of December the activity was very low and
only some bows and greenish clouds were visible.
In front of the Polarlightcenter
This evening the auroras started very early.
It is amazing to see the moving northern lights just in front of the Polarlightcenter and to know the Sun is still quiet.....
December 2012 is a very active month.
Due to clear skies we already enjoyed 11 nights with auroras although the activity of the Sun is still very low.
Also this evening beautiful northern lights showed up again, together with many bright burning Geminid meteors.
For many nights in Dec. we have low aurora activity with a nice northern light bow visible above the northern horizon.
Last evening however there was more activity by surprise and after most clouds cleared up strongly moving northern lights were to be seen high in the sky.
Not the expected shockwave but....
This evening beautiful moving and sometimes colourful northern lights showed up, probably as an effect of a coronal hole.
I was on my way to the beach but had to stop at the house of my neigbour Vibeke to take this picture.
Her place is called "Viva Lofoten" and now you know why....
Waiting for the shockwave
This evening we are waiting for the expected CME shockwave.
For some moments, at about 21.15 UTC, nice northern lights appeared. Nice enough to watch and to photograph.
A group of Italian photographers are also able to take some nice pictures after we sent them the sms-alerts and our Swiss guests are also very happy!!
But.... we are still waiting.
The fourth night in a row we were so lucky to see the northern lights.
On this picture is is to be seen the school of Laukvik and mountain Matmora under the auroras.
This evening around 21.30 lwt. an explosion of auroras were to be seen.
The auroras were surrounded by clouds and it was amazing to see and feel the power of its beauty.
See also picture movie: https://vimeo.com/53409484
Auroras, Jupiter and the Pleiades,
Last evening for a short moment the instruments became active around 21.30 hrs UTC and we could see moving and soft coloured northern light together with Jupiter ('s halo) and the Pleiades cluster.
For our guests and us it was an unexpected surprise.
Although the Sun is quiet, we had three nights weak and strong northern lights due to a group of small coronal holes.
Clouds, snow showers, clear sky and thousands twinkling stars appeared in short moments.
The last two weeks of October the Suns activity was very low and the northern lights refused to appear.
Disapointing for our guests who wished to see the auroras.
This afternoon a CME arrived and tonight the whole sky was illuminated by the magic northern lights.
We all were so happy!
Until now October has 13 nights with beautiful auroras.
Northern lights in different directions, green lights, soft light,
moving and static. See short movie: aurora and a burning meteor
October seems to be a good month for northern lights.
Already 5 nights with sometimes weak or strong auroras.
Last evening however there was firework in the sky.
It lasted the whole night until the early morning hours.
The dynamic and sometimes pink colored auroras were to be seen all over, even at southern directions.
Although it was magnetic quiet the auroras appeared at the beginning of the evening and were to be seen low at the northern horizon above sea. The colours were soft and the auroras were moving and transparant.
Night sky camera is working again
The camera on the roof of the Polarlightcenter is working again !
Last night the northern lights were moving above our heads and the camera could make the first picture of this new season.
Yesterday evening the sky cleared up and nice twinkling stars were visible after some cloudy nights.
Due to a very small coronal hole, we and many other visitors here in Laukvik could enjoy the beauty of the northern lights.
The first visible auroras of the new season !
Around midnight the first stars were visible again after a long period of lightness.
And.... the expected auroral activity from a coronal hole. The instruments showed us the magnetic disturbance and we left our warm bed to enjoy the first auroras. We hope this will be the start of a wonderfull active auroral season.
The statistics of the last northern light season show us that the Sun was not yet so active as expected.
Anyhow this season we have seen 74 nights with beautiful
2 April 2012
Northern light, Venus and the Pleiades
The beginning of April shows the planet Venus and the Pleiades in conjunction.
See movie: Northern light, Venus & the Pleiades
Viewing at the beach
For our guests it was great to see the northern lights on their last evening they were staying with us.
Close by our centre is a lovely spot to view the auroras.
The moonlight was just bright enough and with the sound of the waves and the northern lights above the sea it was a great evening.
Northern light all over
18 nights with northern light. Tonight as a surprise:
Northern lights above our heads and after midnight in southern direction.
March started to be a good month for viewing the northern lights.
Until now, we and our guests enjoy 16 nights with visible northern lights together with the planets Venus and Jupiter.
This year March seems to be a very good month for Northern light.
Until last night we enjoy visible northern light every evening.
Last night the auroras were visible between and behind the clouds. Sometimes low above the horizon and often above our heads.
The Sun is very active at the moment which is promising for the coming nights.
Today very early the northern lights appeared as a dear Valentine: from about 17.00hrs, local time, until the next morning 6.00hrs.
See also the measurements:Spaceweather
By surprise an iridium flare
During a lecture about the northern lights we showed our guests the working of the sky camera and by our surprise an iridium flare appeared at the picture: at 16.46 UTC
This flare is a reflection of sunlight on a solar panel of an iridium communication satellite.
Yesterday evening and last night we viewed the northern lights from 17.00hrs until late at night due to a CME after a M3.2 on
The northern lights were moving and dancing and we saw many times the northern light crown, see picture.
Good start of the New Year 2012
Yesterday evening we and some guests could enjoy beautiful northern lights. Although the moon shine was so bright the auroras were very good visible and the lights were dynamic and sometimes colourful.
Robs dream comes true.....
Last night Rob took the first northern light picture with the night sky camera. After a long time of experiments with the help of our friend Sandor Zeestraten and Nikon Service Point Nederland, Rob realised a night sky camera on the roof of our centre.
This system is computer- controlled and between two rain showers the camera took this picture.
Click on the link:sky camera Polarlightcenter and you get the last (northern light) picture.
Last evening we enjoyed beautiful red auroras.
The expected shockwave arrived at 18.35 UTC
See also Spaceweather:CME shockwave
People are always wondering if they shall see the same bright colours when they see the northern lights by themselves as most of the pictures show.
We always answer that the colours on pictures are much brighter than in reality.
Last night we enjoyed beautiful northern lights and some of my pictures show the same colours as I saw them myself.
But.... maybe everybody sees them in a different way.
This is a picture of the northern light crown.
After the Solar explosions September 24th we were waiting for the lights to come although the explosions were not full Earth directed.
Yesterday the 26th the instruments showed the incoming explosion in our atmosphere: Link
It was the beginning of enormous magnetic storm.
Some guests who were traveling back south received a SMS-alert.
Here in Laukvik, however, the sky was covered with clouds and it was raining at night so we missed the show.
This morning we received some northern light pictures from the Netherlands, from Zeeland and Utrecht, where so far south the northern lights were to be seen! See picture from Jan Koeman
Clear days and nights
Some guests are so lucky to see the northern lights already some hours after they arrived.
Together with friends and guests enjoying the lights makes us so happy and although the northern lights were not so strong we could see the beauty.
Chasing the Northern lights
September started with cloudy and foggy nights but there was a lot of Northern light activity.
Two guests all the way from Hong Kong were so anxious to see the lights when they saw the strong activity on our instruments.
They decided to jump in their car and were driving around in search of a open sky and......they succeeded. See the picture from Yan.
Major Solar flare
Today Aug. 9, 2011 we measured the strongest solar flare in many years. The flare, class X7 from Sunspot group 1263 exploded with a lot of radiation.
Also radio radiation, which shows at the graph in green.
However the explosion was not Earth directed.
See also the page of Spaceweather
7 August 2011
Last week we sent a graphic from a solar flare to Spaceweather as a forecast for expected northern light:
Even at southern latitudes like Denmark, Holland etc. were northern lights to be seen at 5-6 of August.
See the photogallery of Spaceweather
Here in Lofoten the nights were not dark enough....We have to wait until the last week of August to get dark nights again.
Last season from the beginning of September until the end of March the statistics show us in the gray lines the northern light activity on our instruments. The green lines show us the visual outside observations.
January was this year the most active month !
The difference between gray and green means a cloudy sky.
The Sun was still not very active but due to coronal holes, we and our guests enjoyed many nights with beautiful displays.
Although we enjoy during the summer the midnight Sun and the amazing bright nights we are looking forward to see the first stars again at the end of August and.......the Northern Lights.
After a cloudy and rainy evening at midnight the clouds opened up
and the fragile northern lights were dancing and moving and apeared to
all her admirers around the polarlightcenter.
See statistics from northern light observations in Febr.
12 nights with visible northern light in Laukvik.
The speed of the solarwind was lower than expected:
The shockwave arrived at 01.34 UT tonight and p.e.the solar wind speed was max. 540 km/sec. at 05.45 UT
The activity was too low for strong northern light activity.
With full moon and clouds we had to miss the expected lights.....
On Febr.15th 01.56 UTC a first X-flare ( X2.3 ) of the new solar cycle nr.24 escaped from the Sun.
The plasma cloud is Earth directed with a traveling time between 42 and 50 hours. That means possible strong Northern lights late 16th or 17th Febr.
This geomagnetic storm will possibly cause auroras at lower lattitudes.
Miscalculation: traveling time will be between 42 and 72 hours. Solarwind speed between 1000 and 650 km/ sec.
Explosion of light
Yes, this week we have been waiting for these auroras.
The solar wind, coming from a coronal hole, reached after 4 days the earth magnetic field.
The northern lights were amazing !
Are these auroras a promiss for what is coming next days?
Anyhow, for one of our guests this was a beautiful birthday present.
On the last day of this month we were again surprised by the activity on our instruments. After a very cloudy day, the lights appeared between the clouds and our guests could enjoy it.
Dramatic northern lights
Tonight for many hours we could enjoy dramatic northern lights
which changed our island in a fairy-like landscape.
Our magnetometers suddenly began to show big activity and.........
One of our guests was taking pictures of the moon and by his
surprise the northern lights appeared.
Traveling 3000 km. to see the northern lights and on his last night
before flying back home, beautiful auroras prevented our guest to sleep early and had to jump out of his bed again to enjoy the final and spectacular show.
Unfortunately this month the difference between visual aurora and the activity on the instruments was big due to cloudy nights.
Only 8 nights with visible northern lights.
First auroras of October 2010
Although the solar activity was low auroras are dancing across the skies of northern Norway.
Picture taken by Jan Koeman near the Polarlightcenter at the beach.
Northern light observations in Laukvik
8 September a magnetic storm began around 15.00 UT and at 20.58 UT
the show began again. Spaceweather
Also the northern light crown was to be seen several times.
For three nights there has been northern light activity but two nights the sky was cloudy.Last night however at 23.58 we could send SMS-alerts to our visitors and until about 1.00 local time they could enjoy spectacular northern lights.With new moon the sky was pitch dark and
full of twinkling stars.
Our first overnight stay guests of this season were so happy to see the northern lights for the first time in their life.
After some rainy and cloudy days the sky cleared up this evening and around midnight they could enjoy the lights.
The last three nights we could enjoy the first northern lights of the new season.
Our first northern light presentation for a group of 15 persons we had to
interrupt twice to enjoy the auroras!
The day after, two Australian ladies who came all the way up in search for the northern lights were more than happy to see the auroras on the beach.
These nights the full moon was shining bright but could not prevent the northern lights to be visible.
From 19.40 UT. there is a strong magnetic storm this evening, even bigger than last night !!
Today at 10.19 UT. there is again magnetic activity.
Hopefully this activity will continue and causes width scale auroral activity again tonight !!
This evening a CME arrived in our atmosphere at 17.40 UT.
This causes a geomagnetic storm after 20.53 UT.
Northern lights will also be seen at lower latitudes.
A beautiful rainbow around 00.15 local time caused by the midnight sun shining into a rain shower:
Yesterday there was a total Sun eclipse i.a. on Eastern Island.
This beautiful picture is from Joerg Schoppmeyer made in Argentina.
Have a look at:
Here in the Polarlightcenter we are the whole year studying the Sun.
At this periode of the year there is no visible northern light but we
enjoy the Midnight Sun. This picture from last night is made around
01.00 local time.
Look at: Spaceweather 30 June 2010
We know from our instruments and outside
observations, that the Suns activity is growing.
Solar cycle 24 is starting and more and more
sunspots are visible.
Now we can be sure, that more magnetic storms are
coming with even more beautiful auroral displays.
The information gathered from the statistics we started accumulating in
november 2009, showed us that there is a seasonal effect in
magnetic and auroral activity.
Grey means northern light according to the
magnetic sensitive instruments.
Green is visible northern light outside our center.
The difference means, a cloudy sky.