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15th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest Natural World
Rare Halo Phenomena

It was almost midnight when I spotted a very strong halo around the moon from the balcony of a chalet in the Swiss Alps this January. I immediately took my camera equipment and run outside into the very cold night. From there, I was rewarded with additional, very rare halo displays, notably a paraselenic circle, which passes through the moon and makes a huge circle around the sky. Atmospheric optics phenomena are caused by reflection, refraction and diffraction of light by tiny airborne ice crystals. Also visible: 22 degree halo, circumscribed halo, moondog.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 01.2017
Date Uploaded: 09.2017
Photo Location: Mürren, Switzerland
Camera: Canon EOS 550D
Copyright: © Roger Benoit