A Bright Night over Gemini North
There’s more going on in this picture than you might think. This image shows Gemini North, located on Maunakea in Hawai‘i. Gemini North is one half of the International Gemini Observatory, a Program of NSF’s NOIRLab. To the lower left of Gemini is a red glowing light source. This is from the eruption of the Halemaʻumaʻu crater of the Kīlauea volcano, ongoing since late September 2021. Further lower left of Gemini is the faint green light of Hilo, Hawai‘i, mostly hidden by the layer of clouds that often covers the ground as seen from Maunakea. This is a form of light pollution, caused by excessive light shining up into the night sky above. However, protected by the high altitude, Gemini North is frequently shielded by a thick blanket of cloud. This barrier obscures urban light pollution and ambient natural light coming from the island and ocean below. This photo was taken as part of the recent NOIRLab 2022 Photo Expedition to all the NOIRLab sites.