Aurora Over Norway

Auroras can make spectacular sights. Photographed above on 9/26/10,
flowing multi-colored auroras helped illuminate a busy sky above Tromsų,
Norway. Besides the spectacular aurora pictured above, the photographer
caught three satellites streaks, one airplane streak, and a friend trying
to capture the same sight. Although auroras might first appear to be moonlit
clouds, they only add light to the sky and do not block background stars
from view. Called northern lights in the northern hemisphere, auroras are
caused by collisions between charged particles from the magnetosphere
and air molecules high in the Earth's atmosphere. If viewed from space,
can be seen to glow in X-ray and ultraviolet light as well. Predictable
auroras might occur a few days after a powerful magnetic event has been
seen on the Sun.