Northern Lights Over Missouri & Illinois Friday? There’s a Chance
The Northern Lights are a rare occurrence over Missouri and Illinois. That's why I'm always hesitant to mention the possibility as I'd rather not say anything instead of get hopes up and disappoint. However, 3 Earth-directed CME's that will be arriving imminently give our part of America a better-than-average chance of seeing the Aurora Borealis.
I've gathered information from several different sources and they all tell the same story. Space.com said "Strong auroras likely as powerful solar flare eruption hurls possible 'cannibal CME' toward Earth". Cannibal CME? That's intense.
Dr. Tamitha Skov on X said that Earth is in for a 1-2-3 punch of CME's from this solar storm.
But, wait, there are potential problems
NOAA's Space Weather Dashboard still isn't willing to make a forecast of Northern Lights over Missouri and Illinois - yet. It's still too early to determine exactly when the zenith of this solar storm will impact Earth. My wife estimated that it might arrive in the middle of the day on Friday which would make it impossible for us to see them. But, solar particles are expected to start arriving to Earth as early as Wednesday night, November 29.
When will the best chance for Northern Lights over Missouri and Illinois be?
As of this writing, keep a close eye on Aurora Borealis forecasts from NOAA for Thursday night, November 30 and Friday night, December 1.
There's one more problem to mention and it's a big one. Even if this 1-2-3 punch 'Cannibal CME' hits Earth and peaks Thursday night and Friday, most of Missouri and Illinois is expecting rain. It's not rocket science to say that clouds and rain would also zonk any chances of seeing the Northern Lights.
Consider this one big 'maybe' of our skies being very colorful near the end of the week.
Listener-Submitted Photos Of The Incredible Northern Lights Show On September 18, 2023
Gallery Credit: Nick Cooper