Current Auroral Oval [+30min]

Oval (+30min)

Image should be used as a guide only, it is based on predicted geomagnetic activity. Northern Lights may or may not be visible.

Updating the image every 60 seconds

Info

The OVATION Aurora Forecast Model shows the intensity and location of the aurora predicted for the time shown at the top of the map. This probability forecast is based on current solar wind conditions measured at L1, but using a fixed 30-minute delay time between L1 and Earth. A 30-minute delay corresponds to approximately 800 km/s solar wind speed as might be encountered during geomagnetic storming conditions. In reality, delay times vary from less than 30 minutes to an hour or so for average solar wind conditions.

The sunlit side of Earth is indicated by the lighter blue of the ocean and the lighter color of the continents. The day-night line, or terminator, is shown as a region that goes from light to dark. The lighter edge is where the sun is just at the horizon. The darker edge is where the sun is 12 degrees below the horizon. Note that the aurora will not be visible during daylight hours; however, the aurora can often be observed within an hour before sunrise or after sunset. The red line at about 1000 km equatorward of the brightest aurora indicates how far away viewers on the ground might see the aurora assuming good viewing conditions.

The OVATION (Oval Variation, Assessment, Tracking, Intensity, and Online Nowcasting) model is an empirical model of the intensity of the aurora developed at the Johns Hopkins University, Applied Physics Lab by Patrick Newell and co-workers. The model uses solar wind and interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) conditions at the L1 point, upstream of Earth towards the sun, as inputs. The model produces an estimate of the intensity of the auroral energy at locations on Earth. For this product, it is assumed that there is a linear relationship between intensity of the aurora and viewing probability. This relationship was validated by comparison with data from the Ultraviolet imager (UVI) instrument on the NASA Polar satellite. During intense solar energetic proton events (SPEs), the solar wind high-energy proton levels can be so large that they contaminate the ACE solar wind velocity and density measurements used to drive this model. In those instances, an alternative estimate of the solar wind forcing, based on the work of Machol et al., (Space Weather Journal, DOI: 10.1992/swe.20070, 2013) is used as input to the OVATION model.

Acknowledgement
swpc.noaa.gov

Oval (TEST)

Updating the image every 60 seconds

Info

This forecast is based on the 0 – 3 day forecast of the planetary Geomagnetic Activity index, Kp, that is provided as input on a 3-hour cadence. Each frame shows the estimated location of the aurora for a three-hour period. The sunlit side of Earth is indicated by the lighter blue of the ocean and lighter color of the continents. The day-night line or terminator is shown as a region that goes from light to dark. The lighter edge is where the sun is just at the horizon. The darker edge is where the sun is 12 degrees below the horizon.

Note that the aurora will not be visible during daylight hours and it may be an hour or more before sunrise or after sunset that the aurora can be seen from the ground.

This product is very loosely based on the OVATION Aurora Forecast model, an empirical model of the intensity of the aurora developed at the Johns Hopkins University, Applied Physics Lab. The version of the model that is used here has been modified to use the planetary Geomagnetic Activity index, Kp, as a driver rather than the solar wind conditions. The model produces an estimate of the intensity of the auroral energy at locations on Earth for each three-hour period into the future.

Acknowledgement
swpc.noaa.gov

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