CHANCE OF FLARES: NOAA forecasters estimate a 35% chance of M-class solar flares and a 10% chance of X-flares on June 8th. Why? The answer lies in the sunset

Ehsan Rostamizadeh took the picture last night in Kerman, Iran. It shows a setting sun dotted with dark spots. Three of the sunspots have unstable magnetic fields that harbor energy for M-class solar flares, and one of them, AR2080, poses a threat for even stronger X-flares. Because the sunspots are all facing Earth, any flares this weekend will likely be geoeffective. Solar flare alerts: textvoice


High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras as Earth passes through the wake of a CME that struck on June 7th. The initial impact of the CME was weak, but as June 7th turned into June 8th a G2-class geomagnetic storm developed. At its peak, the storm sparked Northern Lights in the USA as far south as Wisconsin:


“There was a quick burst of northern lights in New Auburn WI tonight,” says photographer Justin Phillips. “For 10 minutes the pinks were just incredible. What a way to end the aurora drought!”

NOAA forecasters say CME effects could persist until June 9th with a 25% chance of continued geomagnetic storms. Aurora alerts: textvoice

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