The largest solar storm since 2005 is now in progress. A solar flare occurred late Sunday night and it is now bombarding Earth with radiation and more is to come from the fast-moving eruption over the next couple of days. Most estimates rate this as the strongest for radiation in more than six years and there are currently spectacular northern lights occurring in parts of Europe where nighttime has already fallen. No guarantees around here, but it is worth it to take a look outside tonight as this activity should continue into at least Wednesday and skies will cooperate with mostly clear conditions. Auroras are quite possible over the next couple of nights at lower latitudes such as those right around here in the Mid-Atlantic region. The radiation is mostly a concern for satellite disruptions and communication problems for polar-traveling airplanes. There have been reports of fluctuations on the power grid and disruptions to the Global Positioning System.
Closer to home, there are still signs of a weekend coastal storm that will have to be closely monitored over the next couple of days. A low pressure system will head towards the North Carolina coast by early Saturday and it is not clear as to whether it will then ride up the coast or head out to sea. Also, should the storm actually move up the coast, there would be no guarantees that it would be snow here as we would be close to the rain/snow line. Stay tuned.