Contact information

Ursa Astronomical Association
Kopernikuksentie 1
00130 Helsinki

Ursa Astronomical Association


A bright fireball illuminated southern Finland

27.9. in the evening at around 20:25 a bright ball of fire was seen in southern Finland. Observations about the case are collected using a fireball form . A little before 9:00 p.m., 20 sightings had arrived, most of which were from Uusimaa.

Jupiter approaches opposition

21.9. Jupiter is in opposition on 26 September, i.e. directly behind the Earth as seen from the Sun. In opposition, the planet is at its brightest. In the case of Jupiter, oppositions occur every 13 months, and this time the planet is closest to Earth for more than half a century. The picture was taken by Lasse Ekblom in a good seeing window on August 26.

A lone anthelion in Kaarina

18.9. In the morning of 17.9. Hannu Lahtonen was paying attention when he managed to spot a solitary anthelion in the mixed-cloud sky in Kaarina. The phenomenon, when it occurs at low sun elevantion range, is actually part of the diffuse anthelic arc, its brightest core. In a typical situation anthelion is a part of a complex halo display, but Lahtonen does not mention that other halos were in the sky in this case.

The disintegration of Monday's fireball on video

16.9. Several eyewitnesses recounted the Monday evening fireball on 12. September having split into two or three parts. The disintegration was also recorded in the images of the Nyrölä meteor camera. Harri Kiiskinen published a video showing how the fireball gives birth to a dimmer, shortlived fragment. Kiiskinen says that the fireball is visible in the camera images for 11 seconds, but says that the actual flight was longer because the beginning was not recorded on the camera.

Plenty of observations from Monday night's fireball

13.9 . The observatory has already received 59 observations on September 12. from the fireball seen at 21:42. The observations are focused on the southwestern corner of Finland. Several reports say that the fireball split into two or three parts, with estimates of the duration of the phenomenon being mainly around 5-7 seconds. In the photo, the observation of the fireball by the camera of Ursa Kevola observatory in Turku.

2022 was quantitatively the best NLC summer

5.9. Noctilucents were visible on 53 nights, which broke the previous record from the previous year by two. The number of night in June, July, and August were 13, 26, and 14, respectively. June shared the previous record, July was two better and August was one worse. In terms of magnificence, the season may dwarf in comparison to some other years. "Quite plenty of NLC nights, but scantly particularly spectacular ones", writes Markku Ruonala. The shown shot by Satu Juvonen is from the night of 9/10.8.

Good rainbow day 30.8. In Turku

31.8. A bundle of rainbow sightings were made in Turku yesterday. Although the views on the opposite side of the sun were great, Matti Helin's shot of the 3rd and 4th rainbows, that are found on the sun side of the sky, won the selection this time. Good photos are few and far between (especially of the fourth), but in Helin's color channel extracted image segments of these circles stand out exceptionally well. No naked eye observations exists yet, if such an observation ever surfaces, a video clip taken at the same time would autenthicate the claim.

Butterfly nebula in Hubble palette

30.8. IC 1318, or Butterfly nebula, was the opening target for Erik Pirtala's Deep Sky season. "The sun was at its lowest at only 13 degrees, but in narrow band you can get quite usable data from bright objects even if the sky is not completely dark," says Pirtala. The exposure for this much photoraphed object was just under 28 hours. Pirtala used the classic receipe of Hubble palette and RGB stars.

Arc of fog and glory above the fog

25.8. At the dawn of autumn, sightings of fogbow tend to increase. An example this time is a specimen photographed with a drone in Kruunupyy on Wednesday. As a bonus, in the middle where the drone shadow is, is a tiny but distinct glory. The operator was Sami Mutka.

Wall cloud rolled over Kuopio

25.8. The Puijo tower offered a different perspective for seeing a wall cloud. "The cloud was low and seen from above it looked almost unreal," writes Minna Glad, who took the photo yesterday shortly before 6 pm. Soon after, the cloud swallowed her in and heavy rain forced retreat from the viewing platform.


Plenty of lightning on Friday

21.8. Finnish Meteorological Institute says 19.8. was among the top ground lightning days ever recorded in Finland. And the pictures that have been posted in Skywarden are not any the worse. From the images putting it a one better one after another, and evoking even scifistic vibes, is shown here a shot by Pirjo Koski in Laitila on Friday at 03:35.

Noctilucent clouds still kicking

21.8. The last NLCs were heard of was on the night of 12/13.8 and for a while it already seemed like it's a wrap. Anything but! On 20/21.8. Jani Päiväniemi photographed bright NLCs in Kuusamo. When the area of NLC's shrinks further north in late summer, observers in northern Finland always have the opportunity to pick up the season's last ones. In 2021, the final act was on August 23/24.

Recent thunderstorms

18.8. Thunderstorms have been on the offing since Tuesday and according to the forecast this will last until Friday. In Kempele Marko Haapala hopped on his fatbike to welcome the arriving stormfront by the sea. "With the help of a tailwind biking to Vihiluoto happened quite speedily", he says. Several strikes were captured on camera, this one occurred at 20:47.

Diffuse anthelic arcs from an airplane

16.8. Kalle Helenius dug out from the recesses of the desk drawer a nice halo which he had seen from a plane over Estonia on 26 May this year. "Immediately after takeoff, a scan through the cloud layers illuminated by the morning offered about one hundred seconds of halos at the sun's opposite point below the horizon," writes Helenius. It is a rare halo known as the diffuse anthelic arc. In both shown pictures the shadow of the airplane can be distinquished at the central spot.

Fireball on Tuesday just after midnight

16.8. On Tuesday at 00:07 a bright fireball flew across the sky. Of the 21 sightings that have come to Skywarden so far two are photographic. Based on Ari Jokinen's two sky cameras, the duration of the fireball was 7 seconds, the brightness that of the full moon. Several eyewitnesses say that the fireball broke into pieces at the end, and Jokinen writes that this can also be seen in the camera images. You can watch the flight of the fireball on Vesa Puistovaara's video.

Starlink satellites' pearl string

15.8. There have been more than 20 sightings of the Starlink satellites line seen at 2:07 on Sunday, but fewer where the satellites appear as separate points. In Samuli Vuorinen's photo, the individual satellites stand out. Watch also the video in Vuorinen's observation. Taivaanvahti has one visual observation of the same line of satellites the following night at 2:30 am.

Weather favors observations of Perseids

15.8. Clear skies allowed the Perseids to be seen on both sides of maximum on several nights. Based on the observations of Harri Kiiskinen's meteor camera, the night after the predicted maximum night 12/13.8. was even better. Of the three Perseids in the picture collage, the upper ones come from Matias Takala, the lower one from Jari Luomanen. The green color is visible in the initial phase when the meteor starts to burn up in the atmosphere.

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket was seen on Saturday

13.8. In terms of getting plenty of footage, the timing of SpaceX's rocket launch couldn't have been better as it happened on the night of Perseids maximum. There are currently in Skywarden half a hundred sightings from the southern coast to Rovaniemi of this phenomenon that was seen seen for a couple of minutes shortly before 2 am in Saturday. Here are pictures by Jari Luomanen (left) and Esa-Pekka Isomursu from Tampere and Oulu.

August full Moon photos

12.8. Moon looming low at the horizon is always an evocative sight. Here is a selection of views of the full moon that have arrived at Skywarden in the last few days. The blue background photos were taken by Tuomas Salo, top left by Kari Hassisen and bottom right by Mikko Peussa .

In July, halo variety was on the cards

11.8. Although there were a commendable number of 29 halo days in July (variation 22-30 in 2012-2021), the number of different halo forms remained low as only eleven were seen (variation 16-25). Rarities were observed on five days (variation 1-13), in four cases they were 23° plate arcs, in one case 120° parhelion. Petri Martikainen was the most active rarity observer, catching them on 4 days (his photo here shows 23° plate arc). Paula Mattila and Jukka Oravisaari caught most often halos, on 19 and 12 days.