The first sprites of summer are starting to appear in the skies of North America. The strange thing is, summer is almost three months away. "Sprite season is beginning early this year," says Thomas Ashcraft, who photographed these specimens last night from his observatory in New Mexico.
"At precisely two minutes and twenty-six seconds after midnight March 30, 2012 there was an incredibly powerful bolt of lightning in the vicinity of Woodward, Oklahoma that spawned these red sprites," says Ashcraft. "I could see them from two states away!"
He also recorded VLF and shortwave radio emissions from the cluster, which you can hear as the soundtrack to this video.
So if there's lightning where you live, be alert for sprites. www.spaceweather.com