Articles | Volume 34, issue 1
Ann. Geophys., 34, 41–44, 2016
Ann. Geophys., 34, 41–44, 2016

ANGEO Communicates 18 Jan 2016

ANGEO Communicates | 18 Jan 2016

High-speed stereoscopy of aurora

R. Kataoka1,2, Y. Fukuda3, H. A. Uchida2, H. Yamada4, Y. Miyoshi4, Y. Ebihara5, H. Dahlgren6,7, and D. Hampton8 R. Kataoka et al.
  • 1National Institute of Polar Research, Tokyo, Japan
  • 2Department of Polar Science, SOKENDAI, Tachikawa, Japan
  • 3Department of Earth and Planetary Science, The University of Tokyo, Hongo, Japan
  • 4Institute for Space Earth Environmental Research, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan
  • 5Research Institute for Sustainable Humanosphere, Kyoto University, Uji, Japan
  • 6School of Electrical Engineering, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden
  • 7School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK
  • 8Geophysical Institute, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, USA

Abstract. We performed 100 fps stereoscopic imaging of aurora for the first time. Two identical sCMOS cameras equipped with narrow field-of-view lenses (15° by 15°) were directed at magnetic zenith with the north–south base distance of 8.1 km. Here we show the best example that a rapidly pulsating diffuse patch and a streaming discrete arc were observed at the same time with different parallaxes, and the emission altitudes were estimated as 85–95 km and > 100 km, respectively. The estimated emission altitudes are consistent with those estimated in previous studies, and it is suggested that high-speed stereoscopy is useful to directly measure the emission altitudes of various types of rapidly varying aurora. It is also found that variation of emission altitude is gradual (e.g., 10 km increase over 5 s) for pulsating patches and is fast (e.g., 10 km increase within 0.5 s) for streaming arcs.

Short summary
Stereoscopy of aurora was performed at the record fast sampling rate of 100 fps to measure the emission altitude of rapidly varying fine-scale structures. The new method unveiled that very different types of aurora appear in the same direction at different altitudes.