The aurora borealis can be seen across much of Canada after a solar storm

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The Northern Lights can be seen in some parts of the country where they are rarely seen on Saturdays and Sundays.

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The federally funded Aroramax Laboratory in Yellowknife said in a social media post that the aurora borealis can be found across much of the country this weekend.

Ontario, southeastern Vancouver Island, the southeastern Atlantic provinces, and all southeastern regions, including Nova Scotia, have only parts of the country not listed on the watchdog’s “warning.”

But the lab, which is managed in partnership with the University of Calgary, the city of Yellowknife, the Canadian Space Agency and the local astronomical system, says the lights can still be seen in those parts of the country.

Eric Donovan, a professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Calgary who studies the aurora borealis, notes that a large magnetic storm is more likely to appear in the south than usual when he’s always reluctant to make predictions.

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“There’s a good possibility… there will be very good aurorae that you can’t see very often in large parts of Canada,” he said, adding that the sky had to be clear and other factors were at play.

“Aurora runs on solar air, which is the ionized molecular gas that the sun emits all the time,” he said in an interview on Saturday. “What happens is the gas interacts with the Earth’s magnetic field and that process extracts energy from the solar wind.”

Dawn is one result of this process.

“What people expect tonight will be a significant increase in the rate of energy supply for this system. This means that the solar wind is more intense, contains more charged particles and moves faster.”

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However, the aurora borealis are bright, visible over a wide area, and moving south.

The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Center for Space Weather Predictions has published a report on solar storms and the emission of plasma and magnetic fields from the Sun, known as coronal mass ejections.

Sacha Woodward

"Wannabe writer. Lifelong problem solver. Gamer. Incurable web guru. Professional music lover."

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