Auroral display, Greenland

Auroral display, Greenland

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Credit: JUAN CARLOS CASADO (starryearth.com) / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Auroral display (aurora borealis) over a shoreline near the Qaleraliq glacier, Greenland. This coloured light display is visible in the night sky, usually only at high latitudes. It occurs when charged and energetic particles from the Sun are drawn by Earth's magnetic field to the polar regions. Hundreds of kilometres up, they collide with gas molecules and atoms, causing them to emit light. The Big Dipper star constellation is visible at top. Qaleraliq glacier is visible in the background. Photographed in August.

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Keywords: 2012, arctic, astronomical, astronomy, astrophysical, astrophysics, atmosphere, atmospheric phenomenon, august, aurora, aurora borealis, aurorae, auroral display, big dipper, charged particles, coast, coastal, coloured light, coloured lights, constellation, glacial, glacier, greenland, ice floe, lake, magnetic field, meteorological, meteorology, night sky, northern, polar, qaleraliq glacier, shoreline, solar activity, solar wind, space, space weather, water

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