Auroral Alert! Northern Lights possibly viewable tomorrow night.


One year for our anniversary Nathan gave me a small star gazing guide.

Nathan knows I am not like other girls  (NOT LIKE THAT!!!)

I mean that I am not into flowers and jewelry and froo froo pink stuff. I like cars, and sci-fi, I don’t mind getting dirty or staying that way if I can’t find a shower 5 minutes after I sweat. I am low maintanance, easy going and want for nothing so he never knows what to buy me when an occasion arrises that he knows that social protocol dictates he better get me a gift or else I won’t be the only one not getting anything that night.

So he hands me this star gazing guide and before I even get a chance to get a quizzical look on my face he says “I wanted to get you the moon and the stars…but this will have to do.”

I don’t really have a  point to all this but I didn’t really have a better way to transition this to explain why I get auroral alerts and besides… I think its a cute story.

I just wanted to share with you the possibility of viewing the “Northern Lights” tomorrow evening.

An event on the Sun occurred on the 7th of June.  Prompt arrival of high speed particles has already affected the atmosphere.  Our model indicates that the shock wave will reach Earth on the 8th of June around 5pm GMT.  This will be followed by a disturbance in the solar wind that should produce fairly extensive auroral displays within 24 hr after that time.

For the Northern Hemisphere, the aurora should be visible mainly in North America, since the sun is illuminating most of the auroral zone in Russia and Scandinavia.  If the timing is right, the disturbance will lead to auroras visible from the Northern US on the night of the 8th.

Antarctica will see the display even beginning with the shock arrival on the 8th. For Tasmania and Southern New Zealand it will be the 9th.

It is difficult to predict what the K index will be during night of the 8th in North America, but it is reasonable to expect K=6 which would put the aurora over Milwaukee, and visible on the northern horizon on a line from Portland Ore, southern Nebraska, southern Indiana, to Washington, DC.

Go to the auroral forecast page at: and watch the Short Term (1 hr) forecast.  It will increase when the arrival of the disturbance is one hour away. It will also show you whether you can see the aurora from your vantage point, if you choose the map that shows your location.

If you are north of 55 deg latitude, it may be too light to see the aurora at night.  Let us know of your success or failure and we will amend the section on the auroral forecast page called “Viewing the aurora in the Northern Summer“.


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