Star Trails and a Green Auroras Shine in Astrophotographer Photo

Milky Way and Green Aurora From Lake Minnewanka
Startrails and a green aurora shine in this image taken by Deepanshu Arora at Lake Minnewanka in Banff National Park. (Image credit: Deepanshu Arora | PhotosByDeepanshu)

Starry trails and a green aurora shine in this stunning image taken by astrophotographer Deepanshu Arora at Lake Minnewanka in Banff National Park. 

"While I was shooting images for this star trail, [the aurora borealis] started and it was very prominent in that darkness. It was a very beautiful sight," Arora wrote in an email to

Long exposure times can create star trails in a night sky image. The stars appear as if they are leaving trails behind them as they trace a path across the night sky. The stars appear to move because of the rotation of the Earth. [Awesome Star-Trail Photos from Space]

Auroras are caused by charged particles from the sun (the solar wind) that interact with the Earth's upper atmosphere (at altitudes above 50 miles, or 80 kilometers). 

The charged particles are drawn to Earth's polar regions by the planet's magnetic field, resulting in the aurora borealis, or northern lights, and its southern counterpart the aurora australis, or southern lights.

To see more amazing night sky photos submitted by readers, visit our astrophotography archive.

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Contributing Writer and Producer

Nina Sen is a freelance writer and producer who covered night sky photography and astronomy for She began writing and producing content for in 2011 with a focus on story and image production, as well as amazing space photos captured by NASA telescopes and other missions. Her work also includes coverage of amazing images by astrophotographers that showcase the night sky's beauty.