You've no doubt seen some pretty amazing pictures in your newsfeed today of the phenomenon known as the Northern Lights. Also called the Aurora Borealis, these beautiful and colorful waves of light are typically pretty tough to witness here in Iowa. But given just the right conditions, just like last night, sometimes it can happen! So what causes this amazing spectacle in the sky?

CBS2 reports that the cause was a solar flare from the sun that impacted the earth. explains that it is actually energized particles from the sun that slam into the Earth's upper atmosphere at speeds of up to 45 million miles per hour! The Earth's magnetic field redirects those particles to the North Pole, and you get some amazing Northern Lights! This amazing site has been around for a long time. The earlier suspected sighting is documented in 30,000-year-old cave drawings in France.

Some amazing pictures have been shared today of people right here in Eastern Iowa experiencing the Northern Lights. CBS2 meteorologist Nathan Santo Domingo was flying into Cedar Rapids last night and shared this photo that the pilot took out of the cockpit on approach.

Fellow CBS2 meteorologist Nick Stewart headed out near Vinton to capture this great shot.

Some absolutely amazing pictures! If you got up early, or stayed up late and got a picture of the Northern Lights, send them to us using your KHAK app!



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