What causes a ring around the Moon?

Rings around the Moon are caused when moonlight passes through thin clouds of ice crystals high in Earth's atmosphere. As moonlight passes through the ice crystals, it is bent in a way similar to light passing through a lens. The shape of the ice crystals causes the moonlight to be focused into a ring. This is similar to the way water droplets in the lower atmosphere can bend sunlight to create a rainbow.


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