Astronomy Picture of the Day – Volcano and Aurora in Iceland

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

Volcano and Aurora in Iceland  

Image Credit & Copyright: Sigurdur H. Stefnisson

 

 Explanation: Sometimes both heaven and Earth erupt.   In  Iceland in 1991, the  volcano Hekla erupted at the same time that  auroras were visible overhead.   Hekla, one of the most  famous volcanoes in the world, has  erupted at least 20 times over the   past millennium,  sometimes causing  great destruction.   The last eruption occurred only twelve years ago but caused only minor  damage.   The green auroral band occurred fortuitously about 100 kilometers above the erupting  lava.   Is Earth the Solar System’s only planet with both auroras and volcanos?