Possible STEVE Event Observed in Northern Michigan

May 23, 2023



Photographer: Lucy Hunter   

Summary Author: Lucy Hunter   

Earlier this spring, we had quite a spectacular show of northern lights here in the northwestern portion of lower Michigan. I was with fellow photographer friends in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Area, at Sleeping Bear Point, and captured the above photo of the purplish streak at right center, which appears to be a phenomenon known as STEVE, short for Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement. Unlike other auroras, the STEVE seems to form from a ribbon of hot gases. From our vantage point, it was separate from the end of the green auroral arc in the southwestern sky, at lower right. Whether or not this was in fact a STEVE event, it was an amazing night of observing the northern lights! Note that the Moon and Venus are at the lower left center of the frame. Photo taken on March 23, 2023.


Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Area, Michigan Coordinates: 44.8840923, -86.04773089

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STEVE Observed over Orsta, Norway