Gorgeous Glow! Green Aurora Shines Over Glimmering Lake

Milky Way and Aurora from Banff National Park
Astrophotographer Deepanshu Arora took this image from Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada. The image also shows our glittering Milky Way above the mountains.
(Image: © Deepanshu Arora | PhotosByDeepanshu)

A golden-green Aurora shines over Moraine Lake in this skywatcher image.

Astrophotographer Deepanshu Arora took this image from Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada. The image also shows the glittering Milky Way above the mountains.

"When I was up at Moraine Lake, shooting pictures of our galaxy, I noticed that the snow on the Ten Peaks had green tint," Arora wrote in an email to Space.com.

Initially, Arora thought the greenish hue was a problem with his camera.

"At first I thought it is just the white balance issue, but then I noticed a narrow gray stripe waving in air in [the] west direction," he said. "I didn't realize that it was Aurora Borealis (as I was expecting northern lights to be in north) until I took a picture of it."

Auroras occur when charged particles from the sun's solar wind interact with Earth's upper atmosphere, at altitudes above 50 miles (80 kilometers), causing a glow. The particles are funneled to Earth's polar regions by the planet's magnetic field. The auroras over the North Pole are known as the aurora borealis, or northern lights. The lights over the South Pole are dubbed the aurora australis, or southern lights.

Editor's note: If you have an amazing skywatching photo you'd like to share it with Space.com and our news partners for a possible story or image gallery, please contact managing editor Tariq Malik at spacephotos@space.com.

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