April 17-18, 2001 Aurora Gallery
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Summary: As night fell across North America on Tuesday, April 17th, an interplanetary shock wave swept past Earth and triggered a strong (G3-category) geomagnetic storm. The shock wave was generated on Easter Sunday (April 15th) when a powerful X14-class solar flare exploded near sunspot 9415. The record-setting explosion hurled a coronal mass ejection into space, but not directly toward our planet. Today's disturbance was probably not the CME itself, but rather a shock wave created by the CME as it rapidly plowed through the interplanetary medium.

Unless otherwise stated, all images are copyrighted by the photographers.

  Photographer, Location Images Comments

Duane Clausen, Menominee , MI #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, more D. Clausen: "These twisted ribbons of green and red appeared directly overhead for almost 20 minutes." Photo details: 28mm lens , f2.8, 25 seconds. April 18, 2001

Dirk Obudzinski, Oakdale, California #1, #2, #3, more D. Obudzinski: "This beautiful red aurora curtain filled the whole northern sky, 13 miles east of Oakdale at 11:30 p.m." Photo details: Nikon EM Camera, Kodak Royal Gold 400 Film, 50mm lens, f1.4 April 17-18, 2001

Mark Simpson, Calgary, Alberta, Canada #1, #2, #3, more M. Simpson: "These auroras were the brightest I've ever seen. At midnight it was lighting up the back yard in spite of our urban light pollution." Photo details: Pentax LX SLR Camera. Film: Fuji Superia ASA 800. 28mm lens, f2.8 April 17-18, 2001

Jimmy Westlake, Steamboat Springs, CO #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7 J. Westlake: "What an unforgettable night! It was a classic display from beginning to end, exploding right at the stroke of midnight. It was so intensely bright, I could read the f-stops on my Nikon without a flashlight." April 17-18, 2001

Ron Giachetti, Sacheen Lake, 50 miles north of Spokane, WA #1, #2, #3, #4, #5 Photo details: digital Toshiba PDR-M70 with 30 and 60 second exposures. April 17-18, 2001

Terry Lutz, northern Ohio #1, #2, #3 Photo details: 15 second exposures on fuji 800 film with 20 and 28mm lenses. April 17-18, 2001

Lyndon Anderson, 15 miles north of Bismarck, ND #1, #2 L. Anderson: "The lights were moderate in brightness, mostly a diffuse glow with some beams that went directly overhead. It was very nice." Photo details: Fuji
Superia 800 film. April 17, 2001

Dr. Jay Hartwell, Twin Falls, Idaho #1, #2, #3, #4 J. Hartwell: "The auroras came on slowly appearing for several hours as a green glow in the Northern Sky. Then, as if by magic, the sky was transformed into a churning sea of red! Our family was captivated by how quickly the aurora moved --at times I couldn't aim and point the camera quick enough!" Photo details: Nikon Camera, 800 speed Kodak film, 8-10 second exposures.

Garth Arsenault, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, more G. Arsenault captured these pictures from the Prince Edward Island National Park at the Anne of Green Gables House and at
Cavendish Beach. April 17-18, 2001
Stan Richard, near Collins, Iowa, USA #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, more S. Richard: "The one with the school in the foreground was shot under light polluted suburban skies, I saw this display right through the bright street lights!" See also this stunning panorama. Photo details: 28mm lens at f/2.5, 20-30 secs using Kodak Supra 800 film April 17, 2001

Dominic Cantin, Quebec, Canada #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6 Photo details: 28 mm @ f 2.8 , 25 seconds , Fuji Superia X-tra 800 April 17-18, 2001 (0400 - 0830 UT)

William Hitchens, the lower shore of Maryland, USA #1, #2, #3 Photo Details: Petri Racer 45mm f/1.8 lens, Kodak MAX 400, 10 to 20 sec. exposures. April 18, 2001 (0230 UT)

Jesús Ojeda, Saint Francis, WI
#1, #2, #3, #4 Photo details: 28mm lens, Nikon N80 SLR camera loaded with Fuji Superia ASA 800 and exposed for 30 seconds. April 18, 2001 (0230 UT)

See also our aurora gallery covering the period April 11-12, 2001.

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