The aurora might be visible tonight

NASA sun coronal mass ejection 2010-08-01Thanks to "wonderful fireworks the Sun has been producing," there's a chance we could catch a glimpse of the aurora borealis tonight (you know, the Northern Lights.) [CS Monitor] [HSCFA]

Forecasts indicate New York State could be on the edge of the aurora's viewing area. Around midnight, look to the north for a red or green glow. Your chances will better the more north you are, and the darker the sky.

OK, about those fireworks on the sun...

From SpaceWeather.com:

On August 1st, the entire Earth-facing side of the sun erupted in a tumult of activity. There was a C3-class solar flare, a solar tsunami, multiple filaments of magnetism lifting off the stellar surface, large-scale shaking of the solar corona, radio bursts, a coronal mass ejection and more. ...
Some of the breakaway material is now en route to Earth in the form of a coronal mass ejection (CME).

In other words, the sun has sent zillions of particles shooting toward earth. When those particles hit the upper atmosphere, they get oxygen and nitrogen atoms excited (they become ionized -- that is, they carry an extra electron). These atoms are total lightweights and they quickly give up the extra electron (they can't hold their liquor, either). The light created when these electrons escape is the aurora.

photo: NASA

Comments

Oooh, I'll have a nice dinner of steamed hams tonight to enjoy the aurora with.

Not claiming that any of the 2012 theories or even the movie has any relevance, or that global warming is anything but gospel - but I did not see any of this information of the latest upstroke in solar activity in any of the normal news outlets.

Could it be that the SUN's weather actually has a major effect on the weather of the earth?

Katie beat me by a day with that excellent comment. A DAY!

For anyone who doesn't get why it was the best comment ever to be posted on AOA, here's the reference (it's even Albany related):

http://www.milkandcookies.com/link/54624/detail/

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

Recently on All Over Albany

A redrawing of the Jeter-Papi line

A follow up on the very important matter of the Jeter-Papi Line that divides New York from the rest of the Northeast: The New York's... (more)

The Tavern

The owners of The Confectionery and The Grocery in downtown Troy -- Vic Christopher and Heather LaVine have formally announced their next project: a revival... (more)

The 2014 AOA Startup Grant final

The three finalists for the 2014 AOA Startup Grant gathered at the Berkshire Bank on Wolf Road Wednesday evening to make their final presentations to... (more)

At The Plaza 2014

This summer's slate of events at the Empire State Plaza is out. It includes the usual mix of festivals and concerts. The outdoor moves are... (more)

"Play Me, I'm Yours" applications

This year's Sculpture in the Streets project for downtown Albany will be "Play Me, I'm Yours." Blurbage: Touring internationally since 2008, Play Me, I'm Yours... (more)

Recent Comments

I have never heard anyone who eloped or semi-eloped express regret. And I know many people who have. Not sure what that says about my friends and acquaintances. For anyone strongly considering it - Go for it!

"Play Me, I'm Yours" applications

...has 2 comments, most recently from V.

Trick shot and a goal

...has 1 comment, most recently from Alisa

At The Plaza 2014

...has 2 comments, most recently from julie

Planning a Capital Region wedding: eloping

...has 2 comments, most recently from Susan D'Entremont

Dog etiquette

...has 18 comments, most recently from Cyril