A disappointing night

We had such high hopes. Predictions were good, the best we’d seen for a while, and the early stats were promising but the aurora fizzled out before we had a chance to see it. Our long summer evenings played a small part here. With so few hours of darkness, catching a sighting of the aurora…

27 March Red alert

Woah, what a night! For the first time since October last year, AuroraWatch UK issued a red alert (at 20:45 BST). This was then followed up by a couple of hours of amber alert and surrounded by periods of minor geomagnetic activity (yellow alert). Alert explanation The red alert was generated by the magnetic disturbance…

Daytime alert changes

Eagle-eyed followers may have noticed that we’ve made a change to our alerts. From now on, any alerts issued during “daytime” will look slightly different: Old version: New daytime version: We’ve tweaked the text to avoid any confusion about being able to see the aurora during daylight hours. As you’ll probably know, seeing aurora requires…

Receive alerts by Telegram messaging service

As a trial we’ve added Telegram to the list of services from which you can receive our alerts. Telegram is a cloud-based messaging service with widespread support for all the major mobile phone platforms and computer operating systems. There are native mobile apps for Android, iPhone (and iPad), and Windows Phone. The messaging program can…

The aurora is out, now how do I see it?

AuroraWatch UK constantly strives to send out accurate alerts of when the aurora might be visible from the UK, and we let you know from where you might be able to see it too. So picture the scene: we’ve just issued an amber alert. That means that it could be possible to see the aurora from Scotland, northern…

Red alert cancelled

Red alert cancelled. Red alert: aurora likely. Issued 2016-08-23 13:25 UTC (14:25 BST) by AuroraWatch UK using SAMNET LAN2 data from Lancaster, UK. AuroraWatch UK issued a red alert at 14:25 (BST) today based on magnetic field data from the LAN2 (Lancaster) magnetometer. Unfortunately, the readings were spurious and not related to geomagnetic activity. It,…

We got it wrong last night and here’s why

As followers of AuroraWatch UK will undoubtedly be aware, last night was a pretty good night for seeing the aurora from across the UK. As shown in Figure 1, enhanced solar wind speeds, reaching 600 km/s at their peak, were recorded and were the result of a coronal hole high speed stream (you may see…

Why Kp is a poor indicator for auroral alerts

A question we often get asked at AuroraWatch UK is why don’t our alerts always match up with the estimated current Kp value. In the following post, which first appeared on his blog, Dr. Steve Marple discusses why Kp can be a poor indicator for auroral alerts. What is Kp? Kp is a an index…