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Northern lights may sweep across northern US

The aurora borealis could be seen as far south as Nebraska and Iowa
Published: Dec. 8, 2020 at 4:36 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 8, 2020 at 10:22 PM CST
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(Gray News) – A powerful solar flare headed for Earth could bring the northern lights to America’s heartland this week.

The Space Weather Prediction Center has issued geomagnetic storm alerts for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. That means North America could be in for a celestial show.

The aurora borealis should be visible across the northern tier of the United States in an arc from Washington to Maine, dipping as far south as Nebraska and Iowa in the Plains.

So there is a lot of "buzz" about the potential #SolarStorm heading our way. The SWPC issued a G3 Geomagnetic Storm...

Posted by US National Weather Service Cleveland OH on Tuesday, December 8, 2020

The geomagnetic storm is expected to peak late Wednesday into early Thursday, along with the light show. The solar flare was recorded Monday on the sun’s surface.

Canada’s Northern Lights Centre says the northern lights are “the result of collisions between gaseous particles in the Earth’s atmosphere with charged particles released from the sun’s atmosphere.”

The changes in color are due to the type of gas particles that are colliding with the particles from the sun caused by a solar storm.

Pale green and pink are the most common colors. Shades of red, yellow, green, blue and violet have been seen, too.

To see the northern lights, you’ll need a good view of the northern horizon.

You’ll see better if you get away from city light pollution. That way it won’t overshadow the subtle flickers.

Ultimately, viewing conditions will depend on the weather in your area.

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