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Aurora Color Significance

January 6th Fact-of-the-Day

The most commonly seen aurora color is brilliant yellow-green which is produced when oxygen atoms about 60 miles above the earth's surface are struck by energized particles (primarily electrons) that are following magnetic lines of force headed toward one of the earth's magnetic poles. Higher-altitude oxygen atoms produce different colors when they are struck. For example, rare and especially beautiful all-red auroras are produced when oxygen atoms about 200 miles above the earth are struck by energized particles. Because color indicates height, color also indicates different radio communication effects between two or more points. ©2005 Martek International All rights reserved.


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