The Sky Is on Fire! Your Complete Visual Guide to the Northern Lights


Over the past week, Norway has been witness to some jaw-dropping light shows, the result of an M8.7 class flare and a coronal mass ejection in a direction pointed toward Earth. Many Norwegians shared their photos of the northern lights -- or "nordlys" in Norwegian -- on Flickr, where we reached out to them for permission to republish them here, in the gallery above. Through Flickr, we can see halfway across the world, to the skies above Trondheim and across Norway.

One of the photographers, Bjørnar Eilertsen, also compiled his pictures into this beautiful timelapse video:

Here's a video by Norwegian multimedia journalist Per Byhring explaining how solar weather creates the light displays we see here on Earth.

And finally, in the video below, The Atlantic's video editor, Kasia Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg, has compiled NASA footage of the solar storms responsible for all the beauty.



Update January 27, 11:16 AM: One of the photographers featured above has shared with us a fascinating description of how "aurora hunters" capture these images. Check it out here.

Presented by

Rebecca J. Rosen is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where she oversees the Business Channel. She was previously an associate editor at The Wilson Quarterly.

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. Who cares about youth? James Hamblin turns to his colleague Jeffrey Goldberg for advice.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. James Hamblin turns to a colleague for advice.

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

Video

Pittsburgh: 'Better Than You Thought'

How Steel City became a bikeable, walkable paradise

Video

A Four-Dimensional Tour of Boston

In this groundbreaking video, time moves at multiple speeds within a single frame.

Video

Who Made Pop Music So Repetitive? You Did.

If pop music is too homogenous, that's because listeners want it that way.

More in Technology

Just In