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Chances good for another strong aurora viewing tonight across Finger Lakes

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

Forecasters anticipate a vibrant display of northern lights across the U.S. this weekend, extending possibly into next week, due to intense geomagnetic storm activity. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), this surge in geomagnetic activity, stemming from significant solar flares, is set to peak overnight into Monday.

Observers in the U.S., as well as in countries such as Germany, Switzerland, China, England, and Spain, have reported sightings of the auroras. The phenomena, typically visible in the northernmost regions, have appeared as far south as Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi, driven southward by the strength of the current geomagnetic storms. The visibility is enhanced by the dark skies of the new moon phase that started on May 7, providing optimal conditions for viewing the auroras.

NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center has issued forecasts of “severe and extreme” geomagnetic conditions continuing into early next week. The heightened solar activity is expected to produce dramatic auroral displays, particularly around midnight on both Saturday and Sunday. However, weather conditions such as rain could impact visibility in some southern states like Kansas and Texas.

Susan Moultan captured this photo from Sodus Point during the second night of extensive aurora activity.