Zodiacal Light and the False Dawn

Represented By: Ajay Talwar


Region: Asia

Site: Jammu and Kashmir - India

Spot: Ladakh


As seen on Astronomy Picture of the Day this time-lapse video has captured the zodiacal light rising over Himalayas in Ladakh region, northern India. Turn on your speakers to enjoy the music as well. During certain times of the year, the horizon near the rising Sun will begin to glow unusually early. This early glow does not originate directly from the Sun, but rather from sunlight reflected by interplanetary dust. Called zodiacal light, the glowing triangle of light may be mistaken, for a while, for a sunrise, and so may be called a false dawn. Pictured above, two false dawns were recorded in time lapse movies each spanning about five hours from the perch of one of world's highest observatories: Mount Saraswati near Hanle. At its brightest, the rising zodiacal triangle on the left glows brighter than even the central disk of our Milky Way Galaxy -- visible as the diagonal band moving left to right across the frame. Nilesh Vayada & Ajay Talwar. Music by Sahil Jagtiani, Gaupriya.

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