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Big Solar Flare May Bring Major Aurora

The next couple of nights may see intense northern lights shows, although the extent is hard to predict



AccuWeather.com

A major solar flare that occurred Tuesday at 7:28 p.m. EST may yield a substantial aurora borealis (northern lights) over the next couple of nights. Scientists predict another solar flare early in the morning on March 8. It could be the strongest coronal mass ejection since December of 2006

Areal coverage of the display is almost impossible to gauge ahead of time. The northern lights could be visible as far south as the southern Great Lakes region.

Skies will be clear to partly cloudy along much of the East Coast, West Coast, Great Basin, the northern Rockies and portions of the interior South and the northern Plains. In southern Canada, portions of the Prairies and and British Columbia, clouds should be absent for a time.

There will be a full moon Wednesday night, which could detract from viewing the show somewhat.

Experts at Space Weather.com believe the flare will only graze the earth's magnetosphere, so significant disruptions to radio signals are not expected. Some commercial flights will reroute their trips from polar regions.

However, the solar plasma released from a large sun spot could yield an impressive light show on behalf of the aurora borealis.

From AccuWeather.com (find the original story here); reprinted with permission.

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