The two of the most famous astronomical phenomena, known as the aurora borealis or the northern lights, are known for their mesmerizing effects when they appear in certain geographic areas of the planet. But they have only sporadically been observed in the metropolitan areas of North America for the past few years. And it’s believed that this may be due to the rising temperatures outside of cities during the winter time.
According to local meteorologists, the U.S. experience of the “true northern lights” would include numerous outbursts of green, red and pink across the northern region in conjunction with a storm moving over the Arctic. There has been no consensus as to when and where the aurora might be most widespread, but the forecast favors North Dakota, with a small chance of seeing it in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. The National Weather Service has updated its official aurora forecast as of May 3, but claims it could have been updated earlier in the week.
The aurora — which is technically called a “lunar atmosphere” — causes temperatures to rise 20 degrees above normal. This causes a string of sparks and flashes as the gas, called strontium and krypton gas, suddenly emits electric charges. Those charged particles from space are then pushed along the Earth’s magnetic field lines, eventually reaching the earth’s atmosphere. The waves of energy created by the waves themselves glow spectacularly. See a news report on April 18, 1987 here.