Exciting light appearance at Sonnblick Observatory

This morning (05.11.21) the technicians at the Sonnblick Observatory were able to photograph an exciting light phenomenon.

This phenomenon is a light column, which is counted to the halo phenomena. Starting from the sun you can see a beam of light. This effect is usually observed more in the northern regions, near the Arctic. In the past, such phenomena were often interpreted as something supernatural, although they have a completely natural origin.

How does the phenomenon 'light column' occur?

It occurs when a large amount of flat ice crystals (several millions) slowly sink to the ground in cold, still air. In addition, the formation is favored when the sun is just relatively flat above the horizon. Depending on the light source, this can produce many other color tones besides white.

© SBO / N.Daxbacher: Light column below the Sonnblick Observatory