Like some magical phantasmal wave in hues of green, blue, yellow, red and violet, like dancing fairies in the sky.  One can only imagine what ancestral Norseman must have thought when they saw the Northern Lights.  Many told stories of Valhalla, reflective armour of the Valkyries, some told stories of celestial ceremonies and others told stories of mystical animals like the fiery fox’s tail that sent sparks into the sky.

It was not until the turn of the 20th century when Birkeland’s theory on polar electrical currents laid the foundation of how the Aurora was formed.  Without getting two scientific, earth is surrounded by a magnetic field that protects our atmosphere from the solar wind from the sun.  The collision of the solar wind distorts the magnetic field allowing some of the charged particles to enter our atmosphere.  This collision “excites” the particles which release photon energy.  The intensity of the aurora is directly proportional to the amount of energy that is released from the sun and with more energy = more colour.

So, one could see this a battle or dance between the earth and the sun, maybe our Norsemen weren’t all that wrong.  No matter what you believe all who have seen them are mesmerized at their beauty.