March 2, 2015

March 2, 2015

Icesheet #4727

Photograph by Murray Fredericks, National Geographic

A constellation of orbs, rings, and halos hangs above the Greenland ice sheet in this picture by Murray Fredericks, who spent months photographing the island’s remote beauty. The optical phenomena seen here occur when ice crystals—suspended by powerful winds called piteraqs—refract sunlight.

ICESHEET #4727, 22° AND 46° HALO, TANGENT ARC, PARRY ARC, CIRCUMZENITHAL ARC, AND PARHELIC CIRCLE

See more photos from the March 2015 feature story “End of the Earth.”

Read more about what it’s like to “photograph nothing” on Proof.

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