A geomagnetic storm occurred on Wednesday when a new sunspot blasted a small solar flare that lasted for just over an hour, causing disruptions for some radio operators in Europe and Africa. There was a CME, or a slower-moving, massive cloud of charged particles, that has pushed the Aurora Borealis south. The NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) predicts that the Northern Lights could be visible as far south as New York and Chicago on Saturday in the early morning hours. Read more for another video explaining the difference between CMEs and solar flares, along with additional information.
“As solar storms go, this one is relatively mild. Among the most extreme ever recorded is the 1859 Carrington Event, which is said to have created aurora visible almost worldwide and caused telegraph wires to burst into flames. Given our dramatically increased dependence on electromagnetically based communications today, the repeat of such an event could devastate a lot of our infrastructure,” reports CNET.