Monday, November 14, 2011

NASA releases stunning time-lapse of the Earth

Space organisation NASA has released a time-lapse video shot from the International Space Station. Over the course of several months, they compiled a video which stunningly shows the planet we live on. The effect of human beings populating the Earth is clearly visible: many parts of the world are lit up when they are not being illuminated by the sun. In addition, the Aurora Borealis, commonly known as the Northern Lights, are clearly visible, giving a surrealistic view over the Earth. The video, found below, was shot by a highly sensitive camera that records in 4k resolution.

The famous Aurora Borealis is caused by the Earth's magnetic field and a storm of electrons that are fired from the sun towards the Earth. While the process is not entirely understood, the electrons are able to excite atoms in the Earth's atmosphere, causing a glow that is mostly observed in the spectrum of green light, though red is also possible. It is one of the most wondrous phenomena of nature, and many adventurers travel north to seek the Aurora Borealis.

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