The International Space Station (ISS) shared stunning images of the Earth’s aurora on Jan. 24, often referred to as the Northern Lights, Northern Lights, or Southern Lights as seen in high altitude regions. The ISS orbits 400 kilometers above the earth and already has the upper hand of capturing natural light in a “more impressive” way than the professionals who live on the planet and travel in polar regions to photograph the aurors. The natural light display in the sky is the result of the disturbances in the magnetosphere caused by the solar wind.
On Instagram, the ISS wrote: “The space station’s orbit is 51.6 degrees above the equator and offers sweeping views of the Earth’s aurora between the city lights and the twinkling stars.” At the same time, four different images of the aurors above the planet were shared . Northern lights are visible from countries closer to the Arctic Circle or the North Pole. The best places to do this are Alaska, Canada, Iceland, Greenland, Norway, Sweden, and Finland.
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NASA reveals “new discovery” of the aurora-like phenomenon
Meanwhile, NASA shared an update on the intriguing aurora-like phenomenon represented by the purple band of light in the sky known as STEVE, or Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement. NASA took its official handle on Twitter and thanked citizen scientists from around the world when it announced that a new discovery had been made related to the mysterious STEVE phenomenon.
It was further explained that the phenomenon involved a living band of light arching the night sky. In a press release, NASA further stated that the scientists found that STEVE is not a normal aurora, or not an aurora at all. “A new discovery of the formation of stripes within the structure brings scientists one step closer to solving the puzzle,” revealed NASA.
In an article for AGU Advances, citizen scientists shared new insights into the mysterious purple light formation, including a green picket fence structure, saying the stripes could be “moving points of light elongated from the side in the images due to blurring cameras” . According to the new findings, the “tiny little stripes” that were previously considered to be aurors are an optical phenomenon that arises due to the extreme speeds of ion drift.
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The International Space Station (ISS) has shared breathtaking images of the Earth’s aurora, often referred to as the Northern Lights, as seen in high altitude regions.
The ISS shares breathtaking images of Earth’s aurora among city lights and stars