The Northern Lights could be on display tonight (Friday) - even in the south of England.
Following the largest solar flare in a decade occurring on Wednesday (September 6), both the Space Weather Prediction Center and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) believe outstanding displays will occur tonight.
According to Alistair McLean, Managing Director, The Aurora Zone: “Following the magnitude of the recent solar flare – arguably the strongest for a decade – we are anticipating widespread Aurora storms.
“The G3 magnetic storm... will create more prolific Northern Lights displays in northern territories and maybe some sightings in areas well beyond the usual boundaries.
“It is, therefore, a possibility that the Northern Lights could even be viewed in Southern England.”
A solar flare is a sudden flash of brightness observed near the sun’s surface. This is significant because there is a strong correlation between solar flares and the subsequent occurrence of Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) which, in turn, generate wonderful Northern Lights displays.
September is a significant time of year for sightings of the Northern Lights.
The Aurora Zone has already reported stunning Northern Lights displays from many of their destinations across Scandinavia so far this month and the autumn equinox, well known for increased solar activity, also takes place on September 22.