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Northern Lights could be visible from parts of UK tonight due to solar storm

Northern Lights could be visible from parts of UK tonight due to solar storm

Brits might be able to get a glimpse of the spectacular display in the sky this evening

There's nothing like the Northern Lights turning up unexpectedly to spice up your Monday, is there?

The extraordinary-looking aurora borealis are set to light up skies throughout parts of the UK tonight (25 March), while our pals across the pond in the US will also be treated to a spectacular display.

They only usually emerge within the Arctic circle, so thousands of people flock there to try and track down the colourful, dancing waves of light overhead - but this evening, you might not have to head so far afield.

The natural phenomenon is the result of a 'coronal mass ejection', which the Met Office explains is the large expulsion of plasma from the sun's corona.

When these particles hit our atmosphere, they create the aurora.

And we've got a solar eruption to thank for sending the Northern Lights our way this evening.

Australia's Bureau of Meteorology issued an aurora alert this morning, explaining that a severe solar storm is currently unfolding and that, as a result, this means the southern lights could be visible.

The storms are caused by coronal mass ejections, which refers to when clouds of plasma erupt from the Sun’s outer atmosphere and expel particles towards Earth, which create a dazzling display as they hit the planet's magnetic field.

Leon Neal/Getty Images

Because the Northern Lights are simply radiation from the Sun being deflected by the magnetic field, they are much easier to see when there is a large amount of solar activity - like in a solar storm,

This is down to the fact there is more solar radiation hitting the Earth. Clever, isn't it?

And to make witnessing this even more special, just think that people in southern Australia, from Victoria to Western Australia, and across the States - as far south as the midwest - will also be looking up at the sky tonight too.

On top of that, this impromptu appearance clashes with the penumbral lunar eclipse, which will also be visible across the globe.

I bet people are going to be wishing they bought blackout curtains while they're trying to get some shut-eye.

Jorge Mantilla/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Forecasters have told Brits that there is a chance they will be visible across the UK throughout Monday evening, although it looks like Scotland are going to get the best sightings.

We can only blame the good old British weather, as the clouds and rain can obscure our view of the Northern Lights drastically, but they usually emerge after darkness falls - and, you never know.

The experts Down Under at the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) recommend that people find somewhere very dark - like a beach or a hill - which has an unobstructed view facing south.

An indicator that you are in as good spot to witness the Northern Lights is if the sky is dark, moonless or cloudless and away from the glare of artificial lights.

The BoM said that between 10pm and 2am is usually the best time to catch a glimpse of the auroras.

Featured Image Credit: Getty Stock Images

Topics: UK News, World News, US News, Weather, Science, Space