MISSOULA — Geomagnetic Storm Watches: May 25-27
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Space Weather Prediction Center as issued a Geomagnetic Storm Watch for May 25-27 (Tuesday - Thursday)
Geomagnetic storms on the sun produce Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs). As these fast moving charged particles interact with Earth's atmosphere they can cause a Northern Lights display.
The possible max area of the Aurora is measured by the Kp value produced on a scale from 0-9. For the Aurora to be visible in Montana a minimum Kp value of 5 is needed. This storm is forecast to produce between Kp=5 and Kp=6.
Clouds and rain showers will almost certainly inhibit any chances of seeing the northern lights Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. Unfortunately this is the time frame when models have the storm activity to be at its peak.
However, storm conditions will again be possible Wednesday night into Thursday morning. During this time frame, skies will clear with the potential for good viewing opportunities.
All Montana will have the potential to view the Aurora, however, chances greatly increase the further north you travel.
Good Luck and may your skies remain clear!