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Aurora Borealis Maybe Seen In Iowa,


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#1 Texas Deere and Horse OFFLINE  

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Posted January 09, 2014 - 03:16 PM

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Iowans might get to see the aurora borealis tonight, shown here over Anchorage, Ala., in October 2012. 'Try to get away from as much city lights as possible and look up toward the north,' advises Charles Kerton, ISU astronomy professor. / AP

 

 

Written by Katherine Klingseis

 

Central Iowans will have the best luck seeing the northern lights tonight if they look toward the north horizon, an Iowa State University professor said.

“Try to get away from as much city lights as possible and look up toward the north,” said Charles Kerton, Iowa State professor of astronomy.

A flare shot from a large sunspot on the side of the sun facing Earth on Tuesday. This flare caused particles to be thrown in the direction of Earth, Kerton said.

The particles then should cause Earth’s magnetic field to become distorted and pushed down to lower latitudes. Kerton said this distortion may let central Iowans see the northern lights, also known as the aurora borealis.

The chance for people in lower latitudes to see the northern lights is greater because the sun is at its “solar maximum.” This is a time during the sun’s 11-year cycle of activity when flares happen more often, Kerton said.

Still, it is not common for a flare to cause the magnetic field to distort so much that it allows Iowans to see the northern lights, Kerton said.

“It needs to be a pretty strong explosion,” Kerton said. “This sunspot was one of the largest in the past decade.”

Clouds could obstruct people’s view, Kerton said. According to the National Weather Service, skies over Des Moines will be mostly cloudy.

 

From Yahoo News..

 


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#2 toomanytoys84 OFFLINE  

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Posted January 09, 2014 - 04:16 PM

That would be neat. 

 

Anyone live up that way?  Be cool to see some pictures



#3 JD DANNELS OFFLINE  

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Posted January 09, 2014 - 04:16 PM

That last line is the key line!! It would be cool to see. But it is ovecast already and the air is very damp. I'ts supose to start with Freezing Rain around 2 am and later light snow through all of tomorrow. I will go out and look before I go to bed tonight but doubt I will see it.


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#4 Trav1s ONLINE  

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Posted January 09, 2014 - 06:41 PM

Ditto... planned on taking my wife out with the DSLR and heading north of CR to see what we can find.  Pretty cloudy right now and I don't have much hope.



#5 JD DANNELS OFFLINE  

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Posted January 09, 2014 - 11:16 PM

Not tonight. Just got back in from taking the trash out. Cloud ceiling looks to be between 500 & 1000 ft. Not a star in sight let alone anything else. Did see a 1/2 moon through a hole in the clouds but that closed up.
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#6 IamSherwood OFFLINE  

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Posted January 10, 2014 - 12:01 AM

Clear sky up here, and nothing to report.


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#7 Trav1s ONLINE  

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Posted January 10, 2014 - 09:08 AM

Cloudy cloudy cloudy around here.  Went to be since there was no hope.


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#8 Texas Deere and Horse OFFLINE  

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Posted January 10, 2014 - 02:32 PM

I was hoping someone would get to see this, I have never been anywhere to see it.



#9 Lauber1 OFFLINE  

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Posted January 10, 2014 - 08:19 PM

I remember seeing it once in the 60's as a kid, but not since then. It was foggy here last night, so no joy either.


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