Will the Northern Lights soon be back in Germany? Good chances thanks to active solar regions

Magdeburg/Halle (Saale). – In mid-May, northern lights can be seen in Germany and Saxony-Anhalt – for example on the Harz Brocken and on the outskirts of Magdeburg.

Also read: Northern lights: formation, colours, visibility – all information about the celestial spectacle

The celestial spectacle was triggered by an extremely strong solar storm. The colors in the sky appear when such a storm hits the Earth’s magnetic field.

Northern lights, as photographed here from the Brocken in May 2024, have a special attraction for people.

Photo: dpa | Matthias Bein

Anyone who missed the spectacle in May could be lucky again in a few weeks. According to the European Space Agency ESA, there are two recently very active regions of the sun that are already facing the Earth.

In addition, the American “National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration” (NOAA) states that the region 3664 of the sun, which is responsible for the last northern lights, will be facing the earth again around four weeks after the celestial spectacle in May. However, the condition for northern lights is that this region remains just as active, reports the portal Watson.

Numerous northern lights (Aurora Borealis) were visible over Saxony-Anhalt in May. (Camera: Thomas Schulz, Editing: Samantha Günther)

“Northern Lights today”: Saxony-Anhalt searches Google for information about the spectacle

Also interesting: With video – solar storm creates colorful sky spectacle

Particularly beautiful images of the Northern Lights in mid-May can be seen on the Elbe floodplains near Dessau, around Zeitz over the Elster floodplains, in the Salzland district, over Salzwedel and near the moated castle of Gommern developed.

Apparently, the interest of the people in Saxony-Anhalt in the Northern Lights is great. Google The term “Northern Lights” in combination with “today” and “Germany” is one of the most searched terms. The actor Heinz Hoenig follows next. And the Ice Hockey World Championship is also attracting more interest.

How do the Northern Lights form?

Northern lights are created when coronal mass ejections (CMEs) or solar storms hit the Earth’s magnetic field. There, they do not directly produce northern lights, but rather compress our planet’s magnetic field “like a drop,” explains astronomer Volker Bothmer from the University of Göttingen.

To put it simply, the particles then collide with components of the Earth’s atmosphere, which cause them to glow.

Read also: 46-year-old wants to photograph the Northern Lights and is hit by a car in an accident

Are solar storms and northern lights dangerous?

According to the European Space Agency, major disruptions to space weather pose ESA does not pose an immediate danger to anyone on the Earth’s surface. However, “some geomagnetic storms may be accompanied by high-energy particles that pose a limited risk to flights at high latitudes and altitudes,” it says.

The solar outbursts could also disrupt and damage satellites as well as vital infrastructure on Earth, such as power grids and radio links.

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