Beauty in science

An evocative image from today’s NYTimes about our improved understanding of the beautiful phenomena known as the northern lights. You can read the story here, but I would like to quote from the end of the article:

The next time you see the northern lights, you’ll be able to imagine immense lines of magnetism reaching toward the moon, capturing the solar wind as if they were sails, and then spilling the wind’s particles into Earth’s atmosphere. What we are seeing, in a sense, is the last iridescence of a particle-breeze blowing outward from the Sun.

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