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The remarkable twilight of late June-early July 1908


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Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

    We are coming up to the 100th anniversary of the Tunguska event when an extraterrestial body believed to be part of a comet exploded over the wastes of Siberia on the 30th of June 1908. In this thread, I'm concentrating on the remarkable bright twilight that was witnessed by millions over the northern hemisphere that followed the explosion. There is confusion in the reports of the time of what caused it, some say it was aurora, others suggest noctilucent clouds. Whatever it was, combined with a lingering twilight, it was a remarkable event.

    Here are Times reports on the effect.

    Tunguskaa.jpg

    Tunguskab.jpg

    Here is a remarkable photo. Remember this was before BST, so to gauge it add 1hr to the time stated i.e see it as (11.50pm BST)

    Tunguskac.jpg

    Here are reports from the time

    30th/1st July

    "Twilight all night"

    "A peculiar phosphorecent glow in NNE at 11pm caused a mark excess of light."

    "Glorious sunset with much cirriform cloud. A watch could be read easily in the open country at 11.45pm and with some strain one could even read a letter."

    "Fine spectacle at night, when light was continuous."

    "Remarkable twilight, it being possible to read indoors at 9.30pm."

    "Remarkably lenghtened twilight."

    "The night did not go dark."

    "Fine afterglow at night."

    July 1st/2nd

    "Beautiful afterglow between 10pm and midnight. Remarkable reflected light observed during the night, having the appearance of a prolonged twilight or afterglow."

    "A remarkable sunset, the prevailing colours being primrose and green, flecked with wisps of purple cirrus cloud, succeeded by a golden glow in the NW., which lasted until midnight and a fine display of aurora borealis. It was difficult to distinguish the streamers from the cirrus clouds for there was no quivering or darting movement preceptible, but dusky red and rosy clouds, characteristic of the phenomenon were in evidence until past 1am, when a brilliant dawn dawn began to come on. The combination of the afterglow and the aurora produced an effect not unworthy of the land of midnight sun and such as one rarely sees in England. The Malvern Hills were clearly visible at midnight."

    "Sunset prolonged until 11.15pm."

    "An extraordinary lightness was observed at night. The sky was all cirrus wisps of a greenish hue at 10pm, which might possibly have reflected the sun's rays and caused the prolonged light. From 10.15 to 11.15pm, it scarcely seemed to get any darker and from a bedroom window could be seen the green of the fields and the darker green of the trees beyond."

    "Aurora each night. There were no rays visible, but the whole light scintillated."

    "Extraordiany prolonged twilight. It was possible to read at 11.pm."

    "Remarkably light nights. Newspapers could be read out of doors at 10.30pm on 1st."

    From the Daily News

    "Our Manchester correspondent wires that, taking advantage of the tropical weather prevailing, and the bright light in the sky at the night, dozens of farmers in South Lancashire and North Cheshire are now working day and night - 24 hours a day- getting in the hay harvest."

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    Posted
  • Location: Napton on the Hill Warwickshire 500ft
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and heatwave
  • Location: Napton on the Hill Warwickshire 500ft

    My grand father gave me a book about this when I was about 10

    Nice to have it bought up again

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    Posted
  • Location: Western Isle of Wight
  • Weather Preferences: Snow, Storm, anything loud and dramatic.
  • Location: Western Isle of Wight

    A friend of mine once speculated:-

    In a very distant universe there was a big war long ago, a stray round fired from a weapon of this war flew off into space, millions of years later it hit Earth at Tunguska.

    Probably no where near right, but who knows.

    Always found this event fascinating. Arther C Clark did a documentary with The Tunguska event as one episode, I think in the 70'S.

    Russ

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    Posted
  • Location: Saddleworth, Oldham , 175m asl
  • Weather Preferences: warm and sunny, thunderstorms, frost, fog, snow, windstorms
  • Location: Saddleworth, Oldham , 175m asl

    The BBC has an article on the event.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7470283.stm

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    Posted
  • Location: Swallownest, Sheffield 83m ASL
  • Location: Swallownest, Sheffield 83m ASL

    *tut* It was a UFO that did it.. honest.. :)

    Very interesting read Mr D.. Lets hope that theres never a repeat over a populated area..

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