The northern lights may be visible in the northern third of the United States: see map

The northern lights may be visible in the northern third of the United States: see map

It is possible that the aurora will drop to mid-latitude conditions early Friday and again that night as a strong geomagnetic storm heads toward Earth.



ACROSS AMERICA — Scientists believe a powerful geomagnetic storm will hit the Earth on Thursday, which could trigger a major display of the northern lights early Friday morning and possibly again that night.

Intense geomagnetic storm activity is expected to hit Earth on Thursday, potentially allowing for dazzling northern lights displays as far south as Illinois and other mid-latitude states between 1 a.m. and 4 a.m. Friday. Predicting the aurora borealis is difficult and data is still limited, but scientists say ethereal displays may be visible in the northern third of the country.

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If you go out hunting the aurora, look for dark skies with clear views to the north.

The Kp index — a measure of the strength of a solar outburst — is expected to reach 7 early Friday, according to the Space Weather Prediction Center, which expects a storm slightly lower than G2, but the Kp index usually triggers the appearance of aurora in the countries of Central width. The Kp index is expected to reach 5 on Friday night.

The forecast comes after the Space Weather Prediction Center on Monday detected a solar flare that sent three separate coronal mass ejections from the Sun on a direct path to Earth.

Together, they resulted in what solar physicist Ryan French of the National Solar Observatory in Boulder, Colorado, described as a “rare”Hello continuing medical education“.

“Wow, I didn’t see Hello continuing medical education This has been clear for a long time! “Unlike an eruption at the edge of the Sun, the corona indicates that the plasma is heading directly toward us,” he wrote Tuesday on the social media platform X. “Today’s corona explosion was caused by a large flare, which is expected to cause a large aurora later this week!”

Space.com said aurora chasers should be on “high alert for some impressive displays.”

“What a whopper! The 3500 region of our Sun just gave off a near X-class flare and unleashed a powerful solar storm directed at Earth. Waiting for the coronagraphs, but it looks like this storm could arrive by December 1st. Excellent chances for aurora borealis, Maybe G3-G4 level “With this storm, especially considering there were at least two solar storms on their way already, prior to this one,” Skov said on Tuesday X.

CMEs are not expected to reach Earth’s atmosphere, which could wreak havoc on the electrical grid and disrupt GPS and satellite signals.

In the maps below, people living in areas above the thin red line could see the northern lights within the next two days.

Space Weather Prediction Center maps

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