Northern Lights expected across UK today as geomagnetic storm hits
The Northern Lights are making a stop in the UK
The Met Office has announced that due to a geomagnetic storm being forecast overnight, some of the UK could see what is commonly referred to as the Northern Lights.
Announcing the news on Twitter, the Met Office wrote: "A geomagnetic storm is forecast for overnight tonight. This means an #aurora is possible. Whilst Northern Scotland will be best placed to see this, depending on the strength of this storm and #weather conditions it may be visible as far south as North Wales and north Norfolk."
A geomagnetic storm is forecast for overnight tonight. This means an #aurora is possible. Whilst Northern Scotland will be best placed to see this, depending on the strength of this storm and #weather conditions it may be visible as far south as North Wales and north Norfolk pic.twitter.com/zpIVzhCcqf
— Met Office (@metoffice) February 1, 2022
Aurora are often thought of as magical experiences and are in fact considered to be just that across the world. For instance, in Japanese culture, it's believed that conceiving a child beneath an aurora will bless them with good looks, intellect and good fortune.
In Scandinavia, the area we most associate with the Northern Lights, the phenomenon's mythology is as diverse as the region itself. In Finland, they believe it occurs when a fox runs so fast its tale ignites the sky, however in both Iceland and Greenland, the lights are associated with childbirth.
From a scientific perspective, Auroras occur when solar wind from our sun meets with Earth's naturally occurring electromagnetic field. While most of that energy is dispersed into space, some of it congregates at the northern pole and interacts with stored oxygen and nitrogen, so says National Geographic.
That chemical reaction then creates intense bursts of light that have since become massive tourist attractions.
- Asteroid twice the size of the Empire State Building passes close to Earth
- Elon Musk's Starlink satellites are proving very popular - with cats
- Elon Musk's SpaceX rocket is on course to crash into moon and explode