NASA’s latest video may be the most beautiful thing you see today
6:12 AM EDT, Tue April 19, 2016
01:04 - Source: NASA
Capturing the Northern Lights from space
NASA has released a video shot in space of the Aurora Borealis and Aurora Australis phenomena and it is, quite frankly, phenomenal.
The five-minute clip, produced for NASA TV by Harmonic and released on Apr 17, uses time lapses shot from the International Space Station and shows the dancing lights, which occur when electrically charged electrons and protons in the Earth’s magnetic field collide with neutral atoms in the upper atmosphere, in gorgeous Ultra-High Definition.
Named after Aurora, the Roman goddess of dawn, the lights are usually seen in high latitude regions.
West Iceland —
Winter is northern lights season in Iceland. Some of the best sites for spotting them are in western Iceland. Here, fishing villages like Akranes -- with its beautiful lighthouse -- Borgarnes, and the Snaefellsnes peninsula make great settings. Photo by Bjorn Ludviksson
Northern lights beam over Akrafjall in Iceland's western region. West Iceland was recently named by Lonely Planet as one of the best destinations to visit in 2016. Photo by Finnur Andresson
East Iceland —
The isolated east offers wide open spaces with low light pollution. It's more common to encounter sheep than humans here. Photo by Finnur Andresson
Winter phenomenon —
The best time to see northern lights in Iceland is from October to March. National weather website vedur.is provides forecasts of predicted visibility. Photo by Bjorn Ludviksson
Dark city —
The lights can even be seen in the Icelandic capital Reykjavik by taking a short walk out of the city center. Photo by Stacy Katz
Northern skies —
The open terrain of northern Iceland, with its small population and low light pollution, makes it an ideal destination to catch a glimpse of the aurora. Photo by Finnur Andresson
The Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights, is seen in northern latitudes while the Aurora Australis, known as the Southern Lights, can be seen in high southern latitude areas in Antarctica, Chile, Argentina, New Zealand and Australia.