Credit: Harald Albrigtsen/NASA

NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day features a stunning Auroral Corona over a beautiful Norwegian landscape. Masterfully photographed by Harald Albrigtsen last month in Kvaløya, Tromsø.

An aurora is truly one of the most spectacular wonders of the natural world. It is a natural display of lights in the sky that occurs when charged particles (mostly electrons) are accelerated to high energies in the Earth’s magnetosphere and crashes into the atmosphere.

The latin name “aurora” meaning “sunrise” is also the name of the Roman goddess of dawn. These natural phenomena are predominantly seen at high latitudes (the Arctic and/or Antarctic) regions or Scandinavia such as for this photo.

Aurora borealis is the name of the north (northern lights) and aurora australis (southern lights) the south. Auroras can occasionally be seen in latitudes below the auroral zone as well when a magnetic storm temporarily strikes the Earth.

Astronomy Picture of the Day: 2014 October 14