Using real-time solar wind data from Nasa’s ACE spacecraft, matched with data obtained from a network of magnetometers located worldwide, we are able to forecast, with reasonable accuracy, how the Northern Lights will behave up to one hour in advance. The image shows estimated aurora activity now.
Right now, the aurora is predicted to be: Kp 1.67
In 0 hour and 15 minutes, the aurora is predicted to be kp 1.33
In 0 hour and 29 minutes, the aurora is predicted to be kp 2.33
In 0 hour and 45 minutes, the aurora is predicted to be kp 2.33
System status: All Good.
While all the other forecasts are using satellite and scientific data. The Daily aurora forecast is predicted at 5pm Finnish time (3pm Universal Time) by a person. (The computer models and predictions are great, but using real life experience and pattern recognition is something they can’t do).
- 18th March
Tonight’s estimated aurora level:
Level 4 – High
Auroral activity should be at high levels. Weather permitting, aurora displays may be visible overhead or on the horizon in Trondheim (Norway), Vaasa (Finland), Sundsvall (Sweden) and Faeroe Islands.
We have seen the best of the CME, is not likely we will see the extremely high activity/kp levels from last night, which was one of the best nights in the last 10 years! But there could still be enough left in it to provide a show for those around 60°N latitude and up, so kp4 – kp5 a possibility tonight.
3 Day Forecast
Courtesy of NOAA.
- 18th – 20th March
Generally unsettled (kp3) to active (kp4) conditions are expected through the forecast period (18-20 Mar) in response to waning CME effects and the presence of a recurrent high speed solar wind stream. A chance remains through the period for kp5/G1 (minor) storm episodes.
Predicted kp numbers for the next 3 days:
Time now in UTC (Universal Time) is: 11:17 31/03/15
Mar 31 Apr 01 Apr 02
00-03UT 4 4 4
03-06UT 3 3 3
06-09UT 2 2 2
09-12UT 2 2 2
12-15UT 2 2 2
15-18UT 2 2 2
18-21UT 3 3 3
21-00UT 4 4 4
Why do we use UTC?
UTC (Universal Time) is used in science, weather, aviation, military and many other fields. It eliminates confusion with multiple time zones and daylight saving. For more information on UTC click here
Solar Wind Gauges
These gauges are our own system, they are updated every 60 seconds directly from Nasa’s ACE spacecraft data. The data you see here is what the ACE spacecraft monitored only moments ago. These 3 components are the most important components of the solar wind (when it comes to Aurora Borealis). Note the Bz gauge works backwards. You can view all the components of the solar wind on our other solar wind tool here.
Gauges are updated every minute live (without the need for page refresh).
How to interpret the gauge activity
SWPC Solar Wind Dials
Real time solar wind tool (*NEW*)
click to launch
Aurora Ovation Oval
(short term prediction)
NOAA CME Prediction Forecast (*NEW*)
click to launch
NASA CME Prediction Forecast (*NEW*)
click to launch
ACE Real Time Solar Wind MAG & SWEPAM data
ACE Real Time Solar Wind EPAM (Low Energy Electrons & Protons) data
Magnetometer located in Dombås, Norway 62°N
What Kp strength do you need to view Northern Lights where you are?
The Northern Lights are most often seen in the Lapland regions of Finland, Sweden and Norway along with Iceland and Greenland. But during high activity, auroras are often visible from much lower latitudes, often including Scotland, Ireland, Denmark, Estonia and more. This table allows you to see what Kp level is typically required see aurora borealis where you are in the event of high geomagnetic activity.
If you are having difficulty seeing northern lights from your location, you are always welcome to visit us and come out aurora chasing personally with us, in the most northern town in the EU! Visit tours.aurora-service.eu for more info.