Featured in Alberta – Wild Rose Country Group (17/02/2011)
Featured in Mornings & Evenings – Sunbeams & Storms, Art & Photo Art Group (13/02/2011)
Featured in Your Magic Place Group (08/02/2011)
Sun halo above the Canadian Rocky Mountains at Canmore, Alberta, Canada (graduated grey filter used).
A halo (ἅλως; also known as a nimbus, icebow or Gloriole) is an optical phenomenon produced by ice crystals creating colored or white arcs and spots in the sky. Many are near the sun or moon but others are elsewhere and even in the opposite part of the sky. They can also form around artificial lights in very cold weather when ice crystals called diamond dust are floating in the nearby air.
A diffraction disc or Airy disc has similar appearance, but is a disk, rather than a ring, and has a red border on the inside. Its size depends on the size of the ice or water particles that cause it. These are also known as coronas, but are not to be confused with the thin streaming luminous gas that makes up the sun’s own corona.