NASA astronaut shares astonishing aurora photo from ISS

Christina Koch takes a magic snap.

Amanda Kooser
Freelance writer Amanda C. Kooser covers gadgets and tech news with a twist for CNET. When not wallowing in weird gear and iPad apps for cats, she can be found tinkering with her 1956 DeSoto.
Amanda Kooser
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An aurora glows beneath the ISS.

Christina Koch/NASA

It looks like someone spilled the green wildfire from Game of Thrones across a wide swath of the Earth. 

NASA astronaut Christina Koch shared a photo on Monday of a glowing aurora as seen from the International Space Station. "No filter," she assured us on Twitter.

Long before heading to the ISS, Koch spent time in a different sort of extreme environment as a researcher at the South Pole. "I looked up to the aurora for inspiration through the six-month winter night," she wrote. "Now I know they're just as awe inspiring from above."

The photo shows two Russian spacecraft docked to the ISS, giving an unusual perspective on the lights below. 

The aurora isn't just dancing for people in orbit. Swedish photographer Mia Stålnacke has been sharing the view from Earth and posted a video to Twitter on Sunday of "one of the most intense auroral displays I've ever seen."

Koch should have more opportunities ahead to catch some aurora action. She's scheduled to remain on the ISS until February 2020, an epic 328-day visit that will set the record for the longest single spaceflight by a woman. 

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