• Earth’s geomagnetic storms can cause damage to electrical grids and GPS navigation systems, radio and satellite communications and even disrupt satellite telecommunications.
  • This storm has been rated as a G3, which refers to the third level on NOAA’s 5-level geomagnetic storm scale.
  • Geomagnetic storms can deliver spectacular aurora here on Earth.

A spectacular aurora, also known as the northern lights, could be visible in some northern states this weekend as a “strong” geomagnetic storm is forecast for Earth. 

The storm is due to a significant solar flare and coronal mass ejection from the sun that occurred around 11:35 a.m. EDT on Thursday, Oct. 28, scientists from NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center announced on Friday.

Space Weather Prediction Center informed power grid operators and satellite operators as well as airlines about the potential effects of a geomagnetic thunderstorm. The Center stated that geomagnetic storms can impact electrical grids and GPS navigation systems, radio and satellite communications and other services. 

The solar flare was the second most powerful eruption from the sun this year, according to Space.com.

This storm has been rated as a G3, which is the third-most severe level on NOAA’s 5-level geomagnetic storm scale. G1 storms are less severe, and G5s are more serious. Both Saturday and Sunday are subject to the G3 storm watch. 

Geomagnetic storms can deliver spectacular aurora on Earth. For Saturday night, aurora is possible in Pennsylvania and Oregon due to the geomagnetic storm.

“This could be a great show for people in the mid-to-upper U.S. latitudes for aurora,” C. Alex Young of NASA told Space.com.

What exactly is a solar flare?This is what a solar flare looks likeHow can auroras be visible in America when there is a geomagnetic storm?

These storms can heat the ionosphere – where Earth’s atmosphere meets space – causing the beautiful auroras here on Earth. 

The northern lights are visible by stargazers at certain locations in the U.S. and other northern regions of the planet. It is possible to see the south lights in extreme southern areas of the planet, also known as aurora australis.

The impact of this geomagnetic storm is expected to recede by the middle next week. 

Source: USAToday.com

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