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Letter: The Northern Lights Featured Some Cool Sounds

One reader shares his experience hearing sweet music under the stars

In this letter to the editor, the author responds to Mark Persons’ article “What I Heard During the Solar Event.” Comment on this or any article. Email [email protected].

My wife, myself and our two sons went outside to see the Northern Lights on Friday, May 11. We live about 60 miles south of the 45 parallel in Northern Michigan.

My wife immediately commented on how bright the night time sky was even with the cloud cover.

As we walked around our yard, she said she heard music like a chorus. I had a talk radio program playing in the background but it had no music. One of my sons heard the same thing.

The Northern Lights are seen above the Columbia River Gorge in the early morning hours of May 11, 2024 in Latourell, Ore. Places as far south as Alabama and parts of Northern California were expected to see the aurora borealis from a powerful geomagnetic storm that reached Earth. (Photo by Mathieu Lewis-Rolland/Getty Images)

Later I realized we were standing under then power line that runs across our front yard. I have since read that a computer with a good sound card can record VLF frequencies with a long wire antenna fed into the microphone input, but the author of that article STRONGLY warned not to use that setup in a thunderstorm.

I have heard about the Carrington event of 1859 where telegraph operators heard strange things. I’m wondering if anyone happened to record the sounds from the Northern Lights over the weekend, especially Friday night?

— David Bolduc, N8ATP

[Check Out More Letters at Radio World’s Reader’s Forum Section]