northern lights – milky way 732

Night Sky



The northern lights, or the aurora borealis, are beautiful dancing waves of light that have captivated people for millennia. But for all its beauty, this spectacular light show is a rather violent event.

Energized particles from the sun slam into Earth’s upper atmosphere at speeds of up to 45 million mph (72 million kph), but our planet’s magnetic field protects us from the onslaught.

As Earth’s magnetic field redirects the particles toward the poles — there are southern lights, too, which you can read about below — the dramatic process transforms into a cinematic atmospheric phenomenon that dazzles and fascinates scientists and skywatchers alike.

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