Blue Jets Studied From Space Station | 空间站对蓝色喷流的研究

For years, their existence has been debated: elusive electrical discharges in the upper atmosphere that sport names such as red sprites, blue jets, pixies and elves. Reported by pilots, they are difficult to study as they occur above thunderstorms.
长年以来,关于他们是否存在的辩论一直在进行着:这些中高层大气放电现象,被冠以“红色精灵”“蓝色喷流”“淘气精灵”之名。通常由飞行员们发现,它们发生在雷暴上方,因此很难进行研究。

ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen during his mission on the International Space Station in 2015 was asked to take pictures over thunderstorms with the most sensitive camera on the orbiting outpost to look for these brief features.
ESA宇航员Andreas Mogensen在他的2015空间站任务中,被要求利用最敏感的相机,在空间站这座轨道前哨中,从雷暴上方拍下一些直观的现象。

Denmark’s National Space Institute has now published the results, confirming many kilometre-wide blue flashes around 18 km altitude, including a pulsating blue jet reaching 40 km. A video recorded by Andreas as he flew over the Bay of Bengal at 28 800 km/h on the Station shows the electrical phenomena clearly – a first of its kind.
丹麦国家空间研究所已经公布了这一研究成果,确认了这一好几公里宽,于海拔18千米处的蓝色闪电区域,包含了一条几乎40千米长脉冲的蓝色喷流。Andreas在空间站中以28800公里每小时的速度飞掠孟加拉湾时拍摄的视频,清晰地显示了这以大气放电现象——这也是科学家们第一次拍摄到这样的现象。

 

Andreas Mogensen captures gigantic lightning from the International Space Station
Andreas Mogensen于国际空间站拍摄的大型闪电

 

Cloud turret
塔型积雨云

Satellites had probed these events but their viewing angle is not ideal for gathering data on the scale of the blue jets and smaller blue discharges. In contrast, the Station’s lower orbit is ideally placed to capture the sprites and jets.
航天卫星也曾探测到过此类现象,但是它们的观测角度对于获取蓝色喷流以及更小的蓝光放电现象并不理想。相对而言,空间站的低轨道探测更加有利于捕捉“精灵”和“喷流”等现象。

Andreas aimed for cloud turrets – cloud pillars extending into the upper atmosphere – and shot a 160 second video showing 245 blue flashes from the top of a turret that drifted from the Bay of Bengal’s thunderstorm.
Andreas以塔形积雨云(云柱延伸进入上层大气)为目标,拍摄了一段160秒的视频,展示了孟加拉湾上空积雨云中的245道蓝色闪电。

The blue discharges and jets are examples of a little-understood part of our atmosphere. Electrical storms reach into the stratosphere and have implications for how our atmosphere protects us from radiation.
蓝色放电现象与蓝色喷流是我们对大气研究中一个难以理解的事例。雷暴到达平流层,与之产生干涉,也是大气层从宇宙辐射中保护地球的一种方式。

 

Permanent observation
长期观测

Lightning seen from Space Station
从空间站中看到的闪电

This experiment confirms that the Space Station is a suitable base for observing these phenomena. As a follow-up, the Atmosphere–Space Interactions Monitor is being prepared for launch later this year for installation outside Europe’s Columbus laboratory to monitor thunderstorms continuously to gather information about such ‘transient luminous events’.
这次尝试证明空间站是一个适合观测此类现象的场所。接下来,大气空间交互监测设施将在今年晚些时候送入太空,装置在哥伦布试验舱外侧,用于长期观测雷暴天气,搜集此类“瞬发光现象”的信息。

Andreas concludes, “It is not every day that you get to capture a new weather phenomenon on film, so I am very pleased with the result – but even more so that researchers will be able to investigate these intriguing thunderstorms in more detail soon.”
Andreas为此总结: “将一个新的天气现象捕捉入镜,并不是每天都能做到的,我很荣幸能得到这样的成果——但是依然希望能拍摄到更多,如此一来,研究者们就能有更多信息细节来研究这些有趣的闪电。”

 

Red sprites and blue jets
红色精灵和蓝色喷流

 

原文链接:http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Human_Spaceflight/iriss/Blue_jets_studied_from_Space_Station

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