States in the northern U.S. could see the northern lights Sunday night, according to current forecasts from NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center.
Strong geomagnetic storm levels were reached Sunday morning following the arrival of coronal mass ejections (CMEs). Those ejections are large expulsions of plasma and magnetic fields from the Sun’s corona, NOAA explained.
Northern states like Washington, Wyoming, and Maine could potentially see the northern lights, also known as the aurora borealis, during the phenomenon.
Forecasters with the National Weather Service in Riverton, Wyoming, posted a picture Sunday morning showing the stunning lights from their office.
Geomagnetic storms, which are caused by an exchange of energy from the solar wind into the space environment surrounding Earth, can create the beautiful aurora lights typically seen along the planet’s poles, NOAA said. The storms can also disrupt navigation systems and create harmful geomagnetic-induced currents in the power grid and pipelines, which NOAA said could happen with this particular storm forecasted for Sunday.
The geomagnetic storm warning will remain in effect through the rest of Sunday, NOAA said.
The last geomagnetic storm was observed at the end of September, according to the center's X account.