WHAT CAUSES AURORAS

WHAT CAUSES AURORAS

WHAT CAUSES AURORAS : The “northern lights” are caused by collisions between fast-moving particles (electrons) from space and the oxygen and nitrogen gas in our atmosphere. These electrons originate in the magnetosphere, the region of space controlled by Earth’s magnetic field. As they rain into the atmosphere, the electrons impart energy to oxygen and nitrogen molecules, making them excited. When the molecules return to their normal state, they release photons, small bursts of energy in the form of light.

The northern lights are more formally known as auroras, and are caused by interactions between the solar wind and the Earth's magnetic field. #infographic:

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