THE “Sunk” lightship is in electrical communication with the Essex coast, being connected thereto by a telegraphic cable 8.984 nautical miles in length, laid from Walton-on-the-Naze in an easterly direction. The electrical condition of this cable is ascertained daily at 10 a.m., by means of tests applied at the shore ends. Until the 15th inst. these tests were very regular and satisfactory, but on the morning of that day it was found to be impossible to obtain any satisfactory results, owing to electrical disturbances produced in the cable by some external influence. The electrician on board reported that the weather was very fine and summer-like, sea perfectly smooth, with variable light airs, and he could in no away account for the effects the electrician was observing on shore. Between 9 and 10 p.m. those on board the lightship observed in the northern sky a very brilliant aurora, from which at intervals two very bright columns extended upwards to the zenith, and there apparently joined.
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SMITH, W. The Recent Aurora. Nature 31, 506 (1885). https://doi.org/10.1038/031506c0
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