Northern Lights Flare Up Again: Breathtaking Images Of Astral Auroras Seen Over The Years (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

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  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    The aurora borealis is seen over campers in the snow in Chugach mountain range, outside the town of Valdez, east of Anchorage April 21, 2012.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    The aurora borealis is seen over campers in the snow in Chugach mountain range, outside the town of Valdez, east of Anchorage April 21, 2012.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    Aurora borealis, or northern lights, fill the sky over Finnmark during the 1000 km (621 miles) long Finnmarkslopet, world's northernmost sled dog race, taking place in Finnmark county, northern Norway, March 13, 2011. Picture taken March 13, 2011.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    The aurora borealis is seen from Mile 7 on Beam Road above snow-covered tundras near Nome, Alaska March 10, 2012.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    A general view of the aurora borealis near the city of Tromsoe in northern Norway January 25, 2012.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    Image courtesy of NASA shows the Aurora Borealis over the midwest of the United States on January 25, 2012. The photo, which looks north to northeast, was taken from the International Space Station while above south central Nebraska. Picture taken January 25, 2012.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    The Aurora Australis is seen from an image taken by the crew of Expedition 29 on board the International Space Station, on an ascending pass from south of Australia in the Southern Pacific Ocean to the Northern Pacific Ocean, west of Central America September 18, 2011.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    The aurora borealis is seen from Mile 7 on Beam Road above snow-covered tundras near Nome, Alaska March 10, 2012.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    A portion of the International Space Station (top) is seen along with a view of the Midwestern United States at night with Aurora Borealis, is seen in this September 29, 2011 NASA handout photograph taken by an Expedition 29 crew member on the International Space Station.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    The Northern Lights are seen above the ash plume of Iceland's Eyjafjallajokull volcano in the evening April 22, 2010.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    This aurora australis image was taken during a geomagnetic storm that was most likely caused by a coronal mass ejection from the Sun on May 29, 2010 from The International Space Station located over the Southern Indian Ocean at an altitude of 350 kilometers (220 miles) and posted on NASA website June 21, 2010. The aurora has a sinuous ribbon shape that separates into discrete spots near the lower right corner of the image. While the dominant coloration of the aurora is green, there are faint suggestions of red left of image center. Dense cloud cover is dimly visible below the aurora. The curvature of the Earth's horizon (the limb) is clearly visible, as is the faint blue line of the upper atmosphere directly above it (at image top center). Several stars appear as bright pinpoints against the blackness of space at image top right.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    While docked and onboard the International Space Station, a STS-123 Endeavour crew member captures the glowing green beauty of the Aurora Borealis March 21, 2008. Looking northward across the Gulf of Alaska, over a low pressure area (cloud vortex), the aurora brightens the night sky. This image was taken on March 21, 2008 at 09:08:46 GMT with a 28 mm lens from the nadir point of 47.9 degrees north latitude and 146.8 degreees west longitude.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    he aurora borealis is seen over the town of Hyvinkaa in southern Finland October 31, 2003. The aurora is very visible at the moment as a result of a second huge magnetic solar storm hitting the Earth on Thursday.
  • Breathtaking Images of Astral Auroras
    Aurora Australis, or the "Southern Lights", glow in the sky over the town of Glenn Ourua near Palmeston North, north of New Zealand's national capital Wellington on April 1, 2001, in the area's most dramatic display since 1989. Auroral activity results from atomic particles spiralling into the earth's north and south polar atmosphere along magnetic field lines and then colliding with atmospheric molecules, resulting in the emission of energy in different forms including light. Four solar flares and a pair of powerful magnetic gas clouds spawned in a monster sunspot are believed to have produced this dazzling display.
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Last week, aurora borealis, commonly known as the northern lights, appeared on the skies of Colorado and Kansas in the US andĀ Donegal in Ireland.

The pale green and pinkish glow that the sky-watchers witnessed for a fraction of seconds was much striking and absolutely breathtaking.

According to theĀ Northern Lights Centre, the auroral activity is cyclic and peaks in almost every 11 years. It is expected to peak next in 2013.

Methodically, these bright dancing lights are caused by the collision of charged particles from the sun with the atoms in earth's atmosphere.

Take a look at some spectacular astral auroras seen over the years.

Check out the recent video showing green aurora borealis, filmed using a GoPro HD Hero 2 camera.

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