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Pink Sky in Belgium: Tomato Greenhouse Lights, not Aurora Borealis

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BNN Correspondents
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Pink Sky in Belgium: Tomato Greenhouse Lights, not Aurora Borealis

A celestial spectacle unfolded over Tournai and Mouscron in Belgium when a pink sky, initially believed to be an aurora borealis, turned out to be the glow from the Rouges Délices tomato greenhouse in Pecq. The luminous pink hue, a result of the blue-red spectrum of lamps used for tomato cultivation, painted the night sky, leading to a wave of awe and confusion among observers.

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Mistaken Identity

Residents of the Tournai region were captivated by the pink sky, mistaking it for the Northern Lights. Social media was abuzz with numerous photos of the unusual sky, with people expressing their surprise and intrigue. However, it was soon revealed that the phenomenon was not an aurora borealis, but rather the reflection of red and blue LED lights from the Pecq-based tomato greenhouses.

An Oversight Illuminates the Sky

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The tomato greenhouse company, Greet Biesbrouck, clarified that the pink sky was the result of an oversight in closing the greenhouse roof's shutter. The usual screens that prevent the light from leaking outside at night were not activated, causing the Tournai sky to glow. The company issued an apology for the oversight and clarified that the bright red or pink lights in the sky were unrelated to the Northern Lights.

Aurora Borealis – A Rare Sight in Belgium

While the pink glow over Tournai was attributed to the tomato greenhouses, the real Northern Lights did grace the skies in several places in Belgium, the Netherlands, and France that very evening. The last time the aurora borealis was visible in Belgium was back in 2007, making this sighting a remarkable event. The Northern Lights, a result of electrically charged particles from the sun striking the upper layers of the Earth's atmosphere, create bands of pink and green lights.

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The Northern Lights – A Global Phenomenon

In addition to Belgium, the Northern Lights were also visible in Switzerland, France, Italy, the UK, Ireland, Poland, and Ukraine. Social media platforms were filled with posts and photos of this colorful spectacle, capturing the vivid green, red, and purple hues of the aurora borealis. These colors, a result of charged solar particles colliding with atmospheric gases, vary depending on the gases present. Oxygen produces a green light, while nitrogen causes the sky to glow red.

The pink sky over Tournai and the sightings of the Northern Lights across several European countries provided a captivating celestial spectacle. While the pink sky brought initial confusion, it offered an opportunity to learn about the role of LED lights in tomato production. The Northern Lights, on the other hand, served as a mesmerizing reminder of the awe-inspiring beauty of nature's phenomena.

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