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Delights of the summer Sky: Noctilucent Clouds & Iridium Flare


Having never seen or photographer NLC before, I had been watching the message boards, websites and keeping in touch with astronomy friends regarding any possible displays since the start of May. The weather has not been kind for any of the displays so far so imagine my frustration one night when reports of a possible display came in, I rushed outside and there was complete cloud cover. I dejectedly headed back inside and watched the message boards for the next hour up to 00:30. Sure enough there was a display in progress as photos began to be posted to the message boards. I decided to have one last check for clear skies just before going to bed and….. Eureka!! Clear skies and there they were those elusive electric blue beauties!! A truly memorable night followed. The wonderful views of the progressing NLC display were interrupted by no less than 3 majestic passes of the ISS. Finally as the Sun was creeping towards the horizon the brilliant Jupiter came into view in the north eastern twilight. Upon return to my home when reviewing my photos I realised I captured an Iridium flare along with the NLC. A great ending to a truly magical night.



Location: Killygordon, Lifford, Co. Donegal, Ireland

Date: 14 June 2011

Time: 00:30-3:30

Camera: Self modded Canon 1000D, 18-55mm stock lens set at 18mm

Exposure: 3 x 8sec, ISO 400 F5


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Taken on June 14, 2011