What the Heck Is This?

This is a tough one, but take a guess before your read the hints.

Hint No. 1: The perspective is all wrong.

Hint No. 2: It's got nothing to do with smoke. And it's not in outer space. Read on for the answer …

It's lightning. From above.

In January, the European Space Agency's Paolo Nespoli took the photo, of lightning over Brazil, from the International Space Station.

Lightning sometimes shoots out the tops of clouds into the highest reaches of the atmosphere, at the very edge of space. Thunderstorms also hurl antimatter into space.

Image Credit: ESA/NASA

Got a strange or interesting photo related to science, nature or technology? What the Heck, send it to me, and maybe I'll use it. Or follow me on Twitter, or Facebook.

Robert Roy Britt

Robert is an independent health and science journalist and writer based in Phoenix, Arizona. He is a former editor-in-chief of Live Science with over 20 years of experience as a reporter and editor. He has worked on websites such as Space.com and Tom's Guide, and is a contributor on Medium, covering how we age and how to optimize the mind and body through time. He has a journalism degree from Humboldt State University in California.