In 2017, the sky showed us some purple light ribbons, which got the name, the Steve aurora. Photos with the event exist, but the source and explanation of the strange phenomenon are missing.
Scientists and photographs are trying once again to get to the bottom of the mystery. They are trying to find out the position in the sky and the origins. Could Steve have the same sources as auroras or not?
The mystery of Steve
The first time Steve appeared on the sky was alongside some green lines. The strange phenomenon was caught by a citizen scientist that was following auroras. Because the man didn’t know what to call what he captured, the purple lights become Steve, and the green lines become picket fences.
The scientists were not missing the chance to let Steve alone and found out that the purple light ribbons are from hot atomic particles.
Moreover, for finding out more about the phenomenon, a group of scientists decides to take photos from two different angles and locations of Steve. After everything was inset, they have discovered that Steve is emitting somewhere between 130 and 270 km in altitude, while the green lines are emitting from 95 to 150 km in altitude.
New studies on the Steve aurora phenomenon
The findings are also revealing the fact that both Steve and the picket fences are similar when it comes to their magnetic fields.
Finally, if you are asking yourself what the difference between Steve and the aurora is, we have an answer. The aurora takes place when the magnetic field of our planet attracts the energetic electrons.
The red, green, violet colors that we see are the effect of the colliding of the atoms with the Earth’s atmosphere. All of this is happening at 100 km above our planet. On the other hand, Steve aurora is caused by a hot gas that has a temperature of 3.000 °C and at 300 km altitude.