A series of photos taken by the Finnish photographer Thomas Kast and featuring street light pillars apparently descending from the sky, reached the website of the American Space Agency NASA.
The webpage run by NASA and Michigan University of Technology, publishes on a daily basis the best photo that represents the universe. The competition is fierce, and Kast reportedly tried on several occasions to win the contest. However, this is the first time when the German-born Finn meets favorable atmospheric conditions for optimal shooting of light pillars. “I’ve dreamed at this success for a long time. It is a great achievement for me and I was congratulated by many people,” said Kast who has been living for 15 years in Oulu.
Kast observed the “magnificent light beams” while heading to the grocery store to buy food for cats. He prepared his camera to capture the amazing phenomenon and kept taking photos for 10 minutes, during which he tried to get the perfect angle and composition.
Light poles images generally appear above or below the Sun, but the effect can be generated also by artificial light when perfect weather conditions are met. In this case, the phenomenon was caused by street lights and a nearby parking.
Kast spotted solar light pillars four times in the last three years and says they are easier to photograph than the Aurora Borealis because they emit more light. “The effect occurs when cold moisture rises over the sea,” he said. “The lights go away pretty fast, but if you’re lucky, you can observe and even photograph them. Sometimes the phenomenon takes place in certain locations,” added Kast.
You can see more astonishing images of light pillars phenomenon on Thomas Kast’s original blog entry.