Aurora season begins early with sighting in Arctic Circle

The aurora season has begun, with the first northern lights of the year spotted in the Arctic Circle.

The northern lights have been seen high in the Arctic Circle, indicating the start of the aurora season (Image credit: Lights over Lapland)

The delicate display of lights was seen in Abisko, Sweden, on Friday night. It was captured by an automated camera at the STF Turiststation, a popular tourist destination for aurora viewing.

The auroras are caused by the interaction between solar particles and Earth's atmosphere. When energized particles from the sun slam into Earth's upper atmosphere, they excite gas atoms and molecules, which emit light.

The colors of the auroras depend on the type of gas that is excited. The most common color is green, which is caused by the excitation of oxygen atoms. Nitrogen atoms can also be excited, which produces red, blue, and purple auroras.

The aurora season typically begins in late August and continues until early April. However, the early appearance of the auroras in Abisko suggests that this year's season may be a good one.

The current solar cycle is expected to peak in 2024, which means that there is a good chance of seeing more frequent and intense auroras in the coming years.

If you are interested in seeing the northern lights, Abisko is a great place to start. The town is located in the Arctic Circle and has some of the best aurora viewing conditions in the world.

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