Moon halo, stars, planet over Chile

Haloes around the moon happen when moonlight shines through tiny ice crystals in the upper air. Here’s a moon halo, with bright stars and Jupiter nearby.

View larger. | Photo by Yuri Beletsky in Chile, taken near Las Campinas Observatory. Visit Yuri's Facebook page.

View larger. | Photo by Yuri Beletsky in Chile, taken near Las Campanas Observatory. To see more photos, visit Yuri’s Facebook page.

Yuri Beletsky in Chile captured this beauty on May 13, 2016. The star within the lunar halo is Regulus, brightest light in the constellation Leo the Lion. The bright one on the left is Procyon in Canis Minor, and the one on the right is the planet Jupiter. The moon is surrounded by what’s called a 22-degree halo. The halo you see here is caused by millions of ice crystals in the upper atmosphere. Yuri wrote:

Ice and fire on the sky.

The weather has been terrible here in the northern Chile for the past week and a half already.

Fortunately, tonight, it cleared a little bit, and we witnessed a beautiful halo around the moon. I took a wide-field panorama to show you both the halo and enormous cloud structure.

Clear skies to all!

Thank you, Yuri, and clear skies to you as well.

What makes a halo around the sun or moon?

May 2016 guide to the five bright planets

Deborah Byrd