Northern lights set the sky aglow amid powerful geomagnetic storm

Northern lights set the sky aglow amid powerful geomagnetic storm

Northern Lights Illuminate the Sky Amid Powerful Geomagnetic Storm

Northern Lights Illuminate the Sky Amid Powerful Geomagnetic Storm

Millions of Americans were treated to the magical glow of the northern lights on Friday night as a powerful geomagnetic storm reached Earth.

Also known as the aurora borealis, the northern lights were visible as far south as Alabama and Northern California, with reports of sightings even from Florida and Oklahoma.

Although some areas, like New York City, were affected by cloud cover, experts anticipate the phenomenon to continue through the weekend and possibly into next week. The best chance to witness the northern lights in some parts of the U.S. is expected to be between 10 p.m. Saturday and 2 a.m. Sunday.

Shawn Dahl, a senior space weather forecaster for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, explained that the aurora borealis occurs when energized particles from the sun interact with Earth's magnetic barrier.

The geomagnetic storm that reached Earth on Friday evening was classified as an "extreme" G5 by the NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center, marking the first G5 geomagnetic storm since October 2003. These storms can disrupt satellites and GPS systems.

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