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Halo of ice crystals crowns Antarctica

Halo of ice crystals crowns Antarctica

Crystals of ice in the air bend sunlight into a ring in eastern Antarctica.

Crystals of ice bend sunlight into a ring

Above eastern Antarctica in the sky, ice crystals create a ring of sunlight.

This phenomenon is called 22-degree halo and it’s created by the sunlight passing through tiny, six-sided cylinders of ice in high-altitude clouds. These crystals act like prisms and bend the incoming light 22 degrees of course creating a full circle of light around the sun. These halos of light can occur worldwide, the equator is not an exception.

The image above is captured by a photographer called Enrico Sacchetti in 2013 over Concordia Station, a Italian-French research base. This station is positioned in one of the coldest places on Earth. Here you can find the oldest records of atmospheric carbon dioxide, at least 800,000 years old.