Four NASA sounding rockets took off into the northern lights within 30 minutes as a method of better understanding and visualizing turbulent air currents in the upper atmosphere.
According to the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, the rockets would have produced information in the early launches that took place on a Monday morning which happened near Fairbanks.
The last launch in the active aurora with a temperature of -40 degrees took place post 13 constant nights of unsuitable weather for carrying out a launch.
Two rockets were managed by the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute’s Rich Collins in order to measure turbulence. And according to this institute, Miguel Larsen of Clemson University was in charge of the other two rockets.
Word suggests that these rockets emit a visible vapor so that the research can visualize the turbulence around 60 miles above the ground. The gas or vapor release is a glowing green color after getting mixed with oxygen. The gas is trimethyl alimunum.
“The Poker Flat Research Range was set for a perfect area to launch four rockets into the beautiful, aurora filled sky early Monday morning because the weather was perfect for the launch,” said researchers.
Project scientists, who have been examining the turbulence for a long time, have been waiting for the best conditions to launch these four beauties and concluded that monday weather was the most apt for the launch.
On monday, the scientists were able to launch four rockets into the northern lights successfully. The green gas will be used to study how turbulence works in our atmosphere.