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Watch: Breathtaking Northern Lights over Finland

Lapland enjoyed a spectacular display of Northern Lights on Tuesday as particles discharged by the sun hit the Earth’s atmosphere. A massive sun storm—the strongest since 2005—began colliding with the Earth's magnetic field on Tuesday evening.

Revontulia Äkäslompolon taivaalla.
A time-lapse shot of Northern Lights over Äkäslompolo in the western part of Finnish Lapland.

On Sunday, the sun’s corona, or gas atmosphere, discharged a massive outburst of particles, which sped towards Earth at speeds up to 2,000 kilometres per second. Disturbances recorded in the magnetic field around 5pm on Tuesday were the first signs that the magnetic cloud was reaching Earth.

The Finnish Meteorological Institute says such a strong sun storm could even damage satellites orbiting the Earth.

Delta Air Lines said it was diverting some flights on polar routes between Detroit and Asia to avoid disruptions to aircraft communications by the strong solar radiation storm.