Image: Keith Vanderlinde, National Science Foundation
With today’s super telescopes, we are better placed than ever to witness the astonishing celestial beauty of stars, nebulae and quasars. But while telescopes are invaluable to our understanding of the distant Universe, there are luminous cosmic energies at play far closer to home that can be seen clearly with the naked eye. Most people have heard tales of the legendary Northern Lights – a.k.a. Aurora Borealis – but their southern cousins, Aurora Australis, make no less magical a spectacle.