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Northern Lights expected to be visible in Rochester area this weekend


ALTA, NORWAY – MARCH 29: A general view of the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights between Jokelfjord and Alteidet on March 29, 2017 in Troms, Norway. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Cities in the north, including Rochester, may get to witness the Northern Lights or “aurora borealis” this weekend.

It’s all thanks to an unusual geomagnetic storm, according to meteorologists, called a coronal mass ejection — defined as a large cloud of charged particles from the solar corona — and it’s expected to arrive Saturday. 

This storm could increase the intensity and reach of the Northern Lights to parts of the northern United States over the weekend, according to the NOAA.

According to this graph by the NOAA, some parts of states like Illinois, Michigan, New York, and Pennsylvania might be able to see the lights.

Skies need to be clear in order for people to see the Northern Lights. According to our News 8 weather team, conditions Friday night might not be perfect to see the lights in Rochester. But Saturday night into early Sunday morning, when the storm hits, skies are expected to be clear and the aurora could be at its peak.

Locations around Lake Ontario, where there is less light pollution, will be the best spots to view the lights.

According to the Canadian Space Agency, the aurora can move and dance rapidly without warning, so look up and everywhere to enjoy the full show.

The NOAA provides an aurora forecast that might help you watch the lights. Click here to see that.

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