This gorgeous view of the aurora was taken from the International Space Station as it crossed over the southern Indian Ocean on September 17, 2011. The sped-up movie spans the time period from 12:22 to 12:45 PM ET.
While aurora are often seen near the poles, this aurora appeared at lower latitudes due to a geomagnetic storm – the insertion of energy into Earth's magnetic environment called the magnetosphere – caused by a coronal mass ejection from the sun that erupted on September 14. The storm was a moderate one, rated with what's called a KP index of 6 on a scale that goes from 0 to 9, caused by just a glancing blow from the CME. Credit: NASA
› Link to associated news item
Page Last Updated: January 15th, 2014
Page Editor: NASA Administrator