Will Chicago Be Able to See the Northern Lights Wednesday Night?


Chicagoans could have the chance to see the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, Wednesday night, but will clouds clear for the extraordinary sight?

Earlier this week, a number of sunspots were releasing magnetic energy and fast-paced particles called coronal mass ejections, causing a geomagnetic storm across the northern U.S. and Canada, according to the National Weather Service.

The National Weather Service has issued a geomagnetic storm watch through Friday, though the Aurora Borealis would most likely appear Wednesday night when the storm is at its peak.

"Impacts to technology from a G3 storm generally remain small, but it can drive the aurora further equatorward of its polar home. Aurora may be visible over the northern tier states if the conditions are favorable," the National Weather Service wrote.

According to Space Weather Watch, clouds could impact visibility in some areas, though the upper Missouri Valley was clearing out as of Wednesday morning.

The NBC 5 Storm Team calculated rain continuing overnight into Thursday morning, which would make for near impossible circumstances to spot the Northern Lights from Chicago.

Especially over the northern Illinois border, a mix of rain and snow is likely to reduce visibility into the morning, according to the National Weather Service in Chicago. Fog was also masking the city Wednesday, by the looks of this tweet:

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