Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2016 April 8
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Lapland Northern Lights
Image Credit & Copyright: Juan Carlos Casado (TWAN, Earth and Stars)

Explanation: Early spring in the northern hemisphere is good season for aurora hunters. Near an equinox Earth's magnetic field is oriented to favor interactions with the solar wind that trigger the alluring glow of the northern lights. On March 28/29 the skies over Kaunispää Hill, Lapland, Finland did not disappoint. That night's expansive auroral curtains are captured in this striking panoramic view that covers a full 360 degrees. Local skywatchers were mesmerized by bright displays lasted throughout the dark hours, shimmering with colors easily visible to the naked eye.

Tomorrow's picture: matters of the heart

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