Northern Lights: Astronaut Scott Kelly shares picture of the Aurora Borealis taken from the International Space Station

Astronaut Scott Kelly is on his 195th day aboard the International Space Station

Doug Bolton
Thursday 08 October 2015 18:57
comments
The Northern Lights, visible over Greenland
The Northern Lights, visible over Greenland

American astronaut Scott Kelly has shared an amazing picture of the Northern Lights from his current home on the International Space Station (ISS).

Kelly posted the picture on Twitter, which he was able to access through the ISS's satellite internet connection.

It is one of many pictures that Kelly has shared of the natural phenomenon in the last few days, as the Earth experiences a much more vivid light show than usual.

The bright Aurora Borealis was visible from the Earth too, and was caused by a geomagnetic storm that had been sparked by high levels of solar winds.

The unusually powerful storm meant that the Northern Lights were visible much further south than normal, with stargazers being able to see them clearly from certain areas in northern England.

The increased visibility in the UK was also due to a 'coronal hole' near the equator of the sun, which had aligned with Earth.

Spring and Autumn usually bring stronger lights, but this year the conditions were perfect for a particularly spectacular aurora.

Before becoming an astronaut, Scott Kelly was a fighter pilot in the US Navy.

In 1994, he became a Naval test pilot, and since beginning his career he has logged more than 8,000 flying hours, almost a year in total, in 40 different aircraft and spacecraft.

At the time of writing, Kelly has spent the last 195 days aboard the International Space Station, and is one of six humans currently in space.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments