Capturing Northern Lights with smartphones possible, says NOAA

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Northern Lights Capture

Smartphone cameras with their increased sensitivity to light may provide the opportunity to capture the elusive Northern Lights during clear, cloudless nights.

Most smartphones now provide night mode shooting options enhancing their low light capability. Further, a sturdy tripod, remote shutter and patience can ensure a successful capture of this natural spectacle.

Assistive photography apps can also help optimize your smartphone for night sky photography. Longer exposure times usually yield the best results by allowing your device to gather maximum light.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Space Weather Prediction Center affirms that smartphone cameras could possibly capture auroras (Northern Lights), even when not visible to the naked eye.

Michael Bettwy, the operations head at NOAA, suggests that even locales as far south as Florida might witness the Northern Lights under certain conditions. This is achievable when special weather events or high solar activity enhance the reach of this celestial light show.

An upcoming solar event this weekend could increase the chances of eyeballing these Northern Lights in areas that usually do not witness it.

Utilizing smartphones to capture Northern Lights

The best viewing times are typically late evening or early morning hours, avoiding city lights and pollution. However, atmospheric conditions must align correctly and not every solar event guarantees an impressive light show.

For high-quality images, Bettwy advises prolonging exposure times, using night mode, and a tripod for stability. These methods enhance image clarity and lighting, ensuring photos of a professional standard.

Successful captures largely depend on weather conditions, your smartphone camera capabilities, and sheer luck. It’s crucial to ensure that your smartphone is fully-charged as cold weather can quickly consume battery life.

A steady tripod is also beneficial for long exposure shots that are susceptible to shaking. Manually adjusting smartphone camera settings, such as ISO, shutter speed and focus, can significantly improve photo quality.

Patience and persistence are key as the Northern Lights are unpredictable and can be fleeting. Always be prepared to seize the moment they appear.

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Benjamin Lee is a tech guru with a flair for innovation and problem-solving. With years of experience in the industry, Benjamin has established himself as a go-to expert in all things tech-related.