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Space Weather Alert - 5th May 2023

What Has Happened?

A video showing several CMEs on 4th and 5th May.

GOES X-ray flux for the last few days showing many M-class flares including the long-duration flares on 4th and 5th May


We are expecting an increase in geomagnetic activity Sunday night due to increased solar activity.

A Coronal mass ejection (CME) left the Sun at approximately 09:00 UT on 4th May. It was associated with an M-class solar flare originating from an Earth-facing active region. This CME is expected to arrive late on 7th May or early on 8th and is likely to lead to an enhancement in geomagnetic activity, with a good chance of STORM periods.

The Sun has been quite active over the last few days, releasing many M-class solar flares and CMEs. Another M-class flare this morning (5th May) also had an associated CME, which may have an Earth-directed component. If this CME arrives shortly after the one from 4th May this could further increase and prolong the geomagnetic activity making more intense STORM periods possible.

Assuming clear dark skies, there is an increased chance of seeing the aurora on 7th-8th May. Those in Scotland, northern England and Northern Ireland have the best chance if the weather is favourable.


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The British Geological Survey is a geoscience research centre that is part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and affiliated to the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).

CME or Coronal Mass Ejection
The eruption of a portion of the outer atmosphere of the Sun into space, caused by rapid changes in its magnetic field. Often occurs along with a solar flare.

Solar Flare
Energy released by the explosive reorganisation of magnetic fields within the Sun's atmosphere.

Sunspot/Active Region
A region of intense magnetic field in the Sun's visible outer atmosphere often associated with flares and CMEs.