Aurora Australis over the Indian Ocean
March 4, 2012 from 17:19:17 to 17:27:10 GMT
The Aurora is an electromagnetic event caused by emission of particles by the sun. These travel through space in solar winds, creating waves of electrons and protons. As the waves arrive at the central layer of the Earth’s magnetosphere, they collide with oxygen and nitrogen atoms in the atmosphere, releasing energy in the form of visible light. Oxygen atoms generate green and red light, and nitrogen atoms blue and purple light.
The Aurora Australis, or Southern Lights, were understood by the aboriginal Australians to be the dancing of the gods.
Scandinavian aboriginals believed that the lights were caused by the sparking of the firefox’s tail as he raced over the snow.
To Canada’s First Nations, the lights are sparks from the fur of the caribou.
The Inuit believed the lights to be the souls of lost children playing football in the sky.
Others believed that the Aurora were reflections of large fires, built by God to remind those he created of his everlasting love.
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