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Heads Up! Watch For The Northern Lights Tonight

If we're lucky, there could be a brilliant aurora borealis display tonight for those people living in the northern U.S.

Last Thursday, the sun ejected a strong solar flare, followed quickly by a mass of plasma and charged particles. The Los Angeles Times reports it's the solar ejection that will lead to a geomagnetic storm here on Earth, which creates conditions for the northern lights.

Where can you see it? According to Accuweather, the borealis may be seen "from the Arctic as far south as New York, the Dakotas, Washington and Michigan, with a smaller possibility of it going into Pennsylvania and Iowa, even Kansas. The lights are currently estimated for 8 p.m. EDT Saturday arrival, with a possible deviation of up to seven hours. If the radiation hits much after dark settles on the East Coast the lights may be missed and will instead only be visible for the West."

So it won't be clear until the last minute who'll get the best display. In the meantime, check the above stunning timelapse display from 2010 of Norway's northern lights.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Korva Coleman is a newscaster for NPR.
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