The aurora borealis and the northern lights are two of the most spectacular weather phenomena in the Arctic.
While Antarctica also has aurora borealis and white nights, the phenomenon is often thought of as unique to the Arctic because it is not possible to experience them except for researchers living there.
Greenlandic natives use the word “aurora” in conjunction with the word “ball,” which probably comes from a local legend.
If you whistle while watching the aurora borealis, it will come closer, and if you bark like a dog, it will disappear.
From these legends, the inhabitants must have thought of the aurora as a ball that rolls this way and bounces that way.
The aurora borealis is most clearly visible in the fall sky, less so in early summer, and is best seen in a clear, dark night sky.
The aurora borealis is often seen in Fairbanks, Alaska.
The aurora borealis shines brilliantly against the starry night sky, giving people a sense of wonder about nature.
According to Inuit legend, the aurora borealis is proof that there are spirits in the afterlife.
In other words, the Inuit believe that the aurora borealis comes from spirits who carry torches and guide wandering travelers to their final destinations.
Gold miners also believe that auroras are reflections of light from gold deposits.
These auroras can usually be seen from the end of August until the following April.
Auroras emit light when the Earth’s magnetic poles attract electrified air particles.
They are seen when plasma, particles emitted by the sun, are influenced by the earth’s magnetic field to enter the earth’s polar regions, where they collide with the earth’s atmosphere and emit light.
These polar lights look like a giant light curtain streaking across the sky.
They occur primarily at latitudes of 65° to 70° and are most common at heights of 65 to 100 kilometers above the ground.
Auroras are most often green or yellowish-green in color, but can sometimes be red, yellow, blue, or purple.
In the Arctic (Antarctica), day and night are not the same as on the rest of the continent, where it gets brighter at sunrise and darker at sunset.
Sometimes the nights are as bright as the days and the white nights last for six months, and sometimes the nights are dark for six months.
This happens because the Earth is tilted 23.5° as it rotates on its axis.
On June 21 (summer solstice), the sun shines in the Northern Hemisphere at a very high altitude, causing white nights at the North Pole and night at the South Pole.
1 Around February 21 (winter solstice), the sun shines in the southern hemisphere, causing night in the Arctic and day in Antarctica.
The Arctic white nights usually occur from mid-May to late July, and are characterized by soft, warm light and long shadows from the sun.