Beckton Milky Way
It’s a view I came across in early spring: a lone tree on top of a hill overlooking ranches, ponds, a canal, and the Bighorn Mountains. The milky way was the perfect backdrop when I returned to shoot it on a warm night in July. The green stripes in the sky are from a phenomenon called airglow. During the day sunlight ionizes oxygen atoms in the upper atmosphere, and their recombination at night emits a small amount of light. This chemical reaction occurs about 100km up at the same height as the aurora, which is caused by a different process. Ripples in the airglow come from gravity waves, which may originate from the jet stream or a particularly powerful thunderstorm complex. I often find airglow in my pictures anytime I’m shooting under a dark sky. But this night was the strongest I've ever seen it. The wave pattern was very apparent, although the color was undetectable to my eyes.