Contact information

Ursa Astronomical Association
Kopernikuksentie 1
00130 Helsinki

Ursa Astronomical Association

Rocket-related clouds - 24.3.2014 at 04.45 Vilppula Observation number 23122

Visibility IV / V

Not visible

At about 4.35 I would walk in the yard and notice something bright behind the trees. I went to a better place to take a picture of the phenomenon, but by that time the cloud had already faded and stretched considerably. By five, it had almost disappeared. The first thing that came to mind was that there could be something to do with a rocket launch?

#raketti: Soyuz 2-1b
#satelliitti: Glonass M (Space 2522, 2017-055A)

More similar observations
Additional information
  • Havainto
    • Rocket-related clouds
  • Cloud coverage in the sky
    • Covered 1/8 of the sky
  • Rocket launch
    • Rocket contrails info

      The rocket contrails are colorful clouds that appear when the sun is below the horizon. The contrails can float so high in the atmosphere that the sun shines on them even if it is already completely dark on the ground. They stay visible noticeable quite long after the launch.

      The colors are created by the scattering of sunlight in the small ice crystals. In Finland, rocket phenomena from two different locations have mainly been observed. One of them is the missile launches from the submarines from the White Sea and the Arctic Ocean. They use solid fuel that creates colorful clouds.

      Another source of rocket phenomena is the Plesetsk Cosmodrome Area in Russia. There are a few launches from there every year. These fires usually use liquid fuels, making the clouds less spectacular.

      The visibility of the rocket launch is affected by the time at which the launch is made and where the winds blow. The best of all is around 3-5 o'clock Finnish time, when the cloud has time to spread out a bit and shine in the morning sun coming from the east when it is still dark or dark in Finland.

      During the first decade of the 2000s, rocket phenomena have been observed about twice per year in Finland. Since then, however, it has been quieter.

      Rocket contrails from Oulunsalo, Photo by Jarmo Moilanen.

Technical information

Canon 70D, Sigma 18-35mm

Comments: 2 pcs
Matias Takala - 24.3.2014 at 21.27 Report this

Aika vahvasti vaikuttaa siltä, että tämä tosiaan liittyy Plesetskissä suoritettuun Sojuz 2-1b / Glonass-M-laukaisuun kuten myös Pentti Arpalahden havainto. Aika samalta näyttää kuin kesällä lentokoneesta näkemäni Progress-M-laukaisun pakokaasuvana.

Marko Pekkola - 24.3.2014 at 22.17 Report this

Onnittelut! Hienoa että tämä sai vahvistuksen. 

Send a comment

Comments are checked and moderated before publication If you want to contact the observer directly about possibilities to use these images, use the Media -form.



characters left

By sending in this comment I confirm, that I've read and understood the the observation system's privacy policy.