Space Spiral

Space Spiral

Murals Your Way

On April 20th, a faint blue spiral resembling a galaxy appeared amid the aurora for a few minutes over Alaska. The cause? Excess fuel from SpaceX’s launch of a rocket in California three hours before the spiral appeared in the sky.

You may be wondering why this happened – well, according to space physicist Don Hampton, this happens due to the fuel turning into ice at a high altitude. Hampton notes “…if it happens to be in the sunlight, when you’re in the darkness on the ground, you can see a big cloud, and sometimes it’s swirly.”
Hampton further explained that he has personally seen this sight three times, even though it is considerably rare.

Coincidentally, the Northern Lights are also in Alaska. Because of this, many photographers expecting to capture the Lights ended up capturing something much rarer.

Many photographers noted their shock, like Todd Salat (self-proclaimed Aurora Hunter), who noted “I thoroughly enjoyed the mysterious feeling of the unknown.”

Though rocket fuel is known to damage the ozone layer, the beauty it causes is undeniable. With more launches and advancements in space technology, there is a possibility that Los Angeles residents will witness this event someday, too.