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.
2023 March 27
Explanation: Reports of powerful solar flares started a seven-hour quest north to capture modern monuments against an aurora-filled sky. The peaks of iconic Arctic Henge in Raufarhöfn in northern Iceland were already aligned with the stars: some are lined up toward the exact north from one side and toward exact south from the other. The featured image, taken after sunset late last month, looks directly south, but since the composite image covers so much of the sky, the north star Polaris is actually visible at the very top of the frame. Also visible are familiar constellations including the Great Bear (Ursa Major) on the left, and the Hunter (Orion) on the lower right. The quest was successful. The sky lit up dramatically with bright and memorable auroras that shimmered with amazing colors including red, pink, yellow, and green -- sometimes several at once.
Authors & editors:
Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
NASA Official: Phillip Newman Specific rights apply.
A service of: ASD at NASA / GSFC,
NASA Science Activation
& Michigan Tech. U.