Photos: Dazzling Northern Lights of February 2012

Aurora over Lake Superior with Chair and Beer

Shawn Malone

Astrophotographer Shawn Malone took this shot of an aurora on Feb. 18, 2012, and said: "9° F, no wind made for a perfect night for star gazing, aurora watching. Here the northern lights glow over the frozen shore of Lake Superior is just dim enough to allow for a long exposure of 17 minutes to capture star trails revolving around the north star. I only stayed seated in my Adirondack chair for half of the exposure, as I had to get up and move around to keep warm, hence the transparent appearance of myself!"

Aurora over Lake Superior with Couple

©Shawn Malone/LakeSuperiorPhoto.com

Astrophotographer Shawn Malone took this image of an aurora Feb. 18, 2012. She said: "A couple and their dog make their way down the beach stairs to check out the aurora borealis, over Lake Superior, Marquette MI. Can only wonder what the view must have been like from the passing plane pictured as a streak middle frame."

Aurora over Marquette County, Upper Peninsula of Michigan

©Shawn Malone/LakeSuperiorPhoto.com

Astrophotographer Shawn Malone took this picture of an aurora on Feb. 18, 2012. She wrote: "A bright, swirling and spiking auroral curtain dances over the shoreline of Marquette County, Upper Peninsula of Michigan ... "

Aurora over Upper Peninsula, Michigan

©Shawn Malone

Astrophotographer Shawn Malone caught the aurora over the Upper Peninsula of Michigan on the night of Feb. 18, 2012.

NASA Launches Rocket Into Aurora: Feb. 18, 2012

Donald Hampton

A fisheye photo taken by an automated camera near the entrance gate at the Poker Flat Research Range in Fairbanks, Ala., as a suborbital rocket launches into the northern lights on a science mission on Feb. 18, 2012.

NASA Launches Rocket Into Aurora: Feb. 18, 2012

Terry E. Zaperach, NASA

A two-stage Terrier-Black Brant rocket arced through aurora about 200 miles above Earth on the Magnetosphere-Ionosphere Coupling in the Alfvén resonator (MICA) mission to study the physics of the northern lights. Stage one of the rocket has just separated and is seen falling back to Earth in this photo taken on Feb. 18, 2012.

Aurora Borealis above Yellowknife, NWT

Auroramax

Latest image of aurora borealis above Yellowknife, NWT taken at 02:21 MST on February 14, 2012.

Aurora Borealis above Yellowknife, NWT

Auroramax

Latest image of aurora borealis above Yellowknife, NWT taken at 00:39 MST on February 15, 2012

Aurora Borealis above Yellowknife, NWT

Auroramax

Latest image of aurora borealis above Yellowknife, NWT taken at 02:12 MST on February 14, 2012.

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