Geomagnetic Storm Watch Issued, Northeast Could Be In For Northern Lights Show


The U.S. Space Weather Prediction Center has called for a moderate geomagnetic storm - which is responsible for putting on the colourful display - from July 16 to 17 (Greenwich time).

The northern lights, also known as the aurora borealis occur when upper reaches of the Earth's atmosphere collide with electrons.

A CME, or coronal mass ejection, is an explosion of solar flares that affect the planets due to the sun.

Residents of New England may be able to catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights on Sunday night, though Bostonians might have some clouds deal with, according to the National Weather Service.

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There is a good chance Mainers could see an aurora Sunday night into early Monday morning.

If the storm is strong enough, Washington State could be in for a show, but KIRO 7 Pinpoint Meteorologist Morgan Palmer cautions we won't know for sure until late Sunday evening.

As well, your best chance at catching them is to get away from city lights. These gases give off light from green to orange to red depending on the type of gas being excited by the charged solar particles.

The moon will be in its last quarter, which will aid in keeping the sky darker for viewing. Look north any time after sunset.