The sun ejected a significant coronal mass ejection (solar flare) aimed toward Earth that is expected to hit the planet’s magnetic field tonight into Halloween. The National Weather Service Space Weather Prediction Center has issued a Geomagnetic Storm Watch for the planet.

The impacts can include power system voltage irregularities, and interfere with radio and navigation systems such as GPS. A strong G3-class geomagnetic storm is anticipated when the solar flare reaches Earth’s magnetic field in the upper atmosphere. Power utilities, communication organizations, broadcasters and others are taking precautions to protect their systems, yet it is possible for some system interruptions.

This event will also produce an Aurora Borealis that will occur above 50 degrees north and be visible as far south as Oregon, meaning it should be visible to the naked eye in the North Sound. Decreasing clouds are forecast later today (Friday) and into Halloween weekend. So the odds to see the Aurora are good.

For more information about this geomagnetic storm and the Aurora Borealis, visit the Space Weather Prediction Center’s website and follow the action.

North Sound Meteorologist Ted Buehner worked more than 40 years for the National Weather Service (NWS) from 1977 to 2018. He is now an Everett Post Media team member. Together with Everett Post Weather Minute Podcasts, he provides morning and afternoon commute traffic and weather updates on both KRKO and KXA Radio, and sports reporting on KRKO.