Aurora May3_4 2014FEA

Heads-up For Aurora Tonight April 29-30

When it gets dark tonight, keep watch on the northern sky. There’s a chance for a minor G1 auroral storm. You might see anything from a quiet arc to active rayed arcs in the lower half of the northern sky beginning at nightfall and continuing into the early morning hours. Since the aurora is generally…
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Use this map to help you track comet 252P/LINEAR through June. The position is shown for 5 a.m. local Daylight Saving Time with the comet's position marked every 3 days. Stars are labeled with their Greek letters and numbers and plotted to magnitude +7.5. Saturn and Mars' positions are for early April.  All the Greek lettered stars are bright enough to see with the naked eye. Created with Chris Marriott's SkyMap

No Foolin’, We Might Get Aurora Tonight / Comet 252P Still Bright

I’d love to write about a big aurora coming April Fools night just to kid around. Unfortunately, I can’t do that because there really is a chance for northern lights tonight. A recent coronal hole opened up and allowed a stream of particles loose in Earth’s direction that’s expected to impact tonight. Space weather experts…
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The fringe of the auroral oval was pushing over into northern Minnesota around midnight tonight March 6-7. Click for the current oval. Credit: NOAA/NASA

Minor Aurora In Progress Tonight March 6-7

Just returned from a look outside and I see the aurora is active. I’m picking up a bright arc very low down in the northern sky. There was also minor activity earlier. Nothing major on the horizon, but this is the first aurora to show up in some weeks for northern Minnesota. The forecast calls…
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The bars at far right show the Kp index over the past 12 hours. K=5 is a minor storm; K=6 is moderate and visible further south into southern Wisconsin. Michigan, etc. Credit: NOAA

Aurora Alert Tonight Feb. 16-17

I feel a little sheepish with another aurora report after the Valentine’s night display failed to happen. But I’m gonna do it anyway. All afternoon, the Kp index, an indicator of magnetic activity high in the atmosphere, has been at 5 and 6, numbers that indicate a minor to moderate geomagnetic storm in progress. As of 6:30…
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Aurora Nov8_2015 AFEA

More Aurora? Enough Already!

I’ve been tempted to blog about the northern lights the past two nights. This morning I caved. The past two nights we’ve had weak displays here in Duluth, Minn. Too little to move the needle mostly because they’ve been low and faint. But I find that the more northern lights I see, the more I…
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