Forecasters expect that the worst of the storm will hit around midnight on Saturday night. During this time, a full-halo coronal mass ejection is expected to reach the Earth’s magnetic field.
Experts have noted that auroras may also be visible over the weekend in areas much farther from the poles than their usual latitudes.
According to a statement from the Space Weather Prediction Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the coronal mass ejection was first observed on Thursday.
Coronal mass ejections are bursts of charged particles that are ejected from the Sun’s atmosphere.
When these particles interact with the earth’s magnetic field, they can create breathtaking auroras.
However, they can also wreak minor havoc on electrical grids or disrupt spacecraft operations and satellite-based communications.
Dr Tamitha Skov, a space wather physicist, wrote on Twitter: “The #solarstorm has arrived. Sporadic shows are occurring now.
“We’ve seen #aurora clear down to Ohio, but only momentarily”.
Ms Skov added: “The storm is only beginning, but G1-levels are likely. G2-storm levels are definitely possible if speed stays high, but the field is too chaotic (e.g. turbulent) now to know for sure”.
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But a few people will register a luminous natural spectacle.
The Sun is on an 11-year solar cycle, with scientists saying the current one will peak in 2025, by which time solar flares will be more intense and extreme.
This has caused some scientists to raise concerns as our existing internet communication structure is vulnerable to violent solar storms, according to a study by the University of California.
The study found that if a particularly strong solar storm crashed into the Earth, it would have the power to not only disrupt power grids and satellites but also to paralyze the internet long term.