Powerful Solar Storms Means Michigan Could See Northern Lights Late This Week
We could get quite the celestial light show later in the week. A lot will depend on factors out of our control, like cloud cover and just how big a solar storm we had this past weekend and Monday, but it's possible we'll be able to see the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, over Michigan on March 30 and 31st, and even into April 1st..
According to News 18, NASA Issued a Warning of a Solar Storm on March 28. This, experts say, likely will trigger strong auroras in the northern poles, according to NASA, which says solar storms are caused when large jets of highly charged particles emerge from the surface of the sun and get pushed out into space.
MLive says the auroras are so strong that they should be visible along with the northern third of the United States. While our weather should be quite cloudy, Wednesday and Thursday, NOAA indicates a G2 Geomagnetic storm watch will be in effect Friday, when skies should clear here. (Clear skies are critical, but it helps.)
NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says "A G3 (Moderate) geomagnetic storm watch is in effect for 31 March, 2022. A Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) erupted on 28 March associated with an M4 flare at 7:29 am EDT (1129 UTC). Initial analyses and model guidance suggests a portion of the CME will arrive during the late evening of 30 March into early morning of 31 March (EDT). Forecast confidence of an Earth-directed component is moderate, while there is less confidence in timing and intensity. When the CME approaches Earth, NOAA’s DSCOVR satellite will detect the real-time solar wind changes and SWPC forecasters will issue any appropriate warnings. Impacts to technology from a G2 storm are generally small, but it can drive the aurora equatorward of its polar home. Aurora may be visible over the northern portions of the northern tier states if the conditions are favorable. - NOAA