An initially promising U.S. forecast for the northern lights has gone bust.
Stargazers in the continental 48 states have essentially zero chance of seeing the astronomical phenomenon this week, the head of operations at the U.S. government’s space weather prediction center said Thursday.
Robert Rutledge, the lead of operations at the Space Weather Prediction Center, said the agency had high hopes for Thursday and Friday, but it downgraded its forecast because the chances turned out to be a “big miss.”
He called the disappointing news “not incredibly unusual in space weather forecasting.”
The silver lining for sky watchers is that conditions in the coming months and years look more favorable, Rutledge said.
New England stargazers had hoped to catch a glimpse of the northern lights, but clouds would have made it difficult, said David Clark, a member of Penobscot Valley Star Gazers in Maine.
“I’m sure people are going to try,” he said. “I don’t have high hopes for it.”
© 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.
Northern lights a ‘big miss,’ US space forecaster says (2020, December 10)
retrieved 10 December 2020
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no
part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.