KSAT Connect: Aurora borealis spotted in South Central Texas due to geomagnetic storm

This weekend’s geomagnetic storm is the strongest recorded since October 2003

SAN ANTONIO – It was a rare sight across parts of the South Central Texas sky Friday night: the aurora borealis!

A strong geomagnetic storm — the strongest since October 2003 — occurring this weekend allowed these colorful waves to extend farther south than usual.

According to the NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center, a cluster of sunspots has ejected solar flares, plasma, and magnetic fields towards Earth over the past few days, causing this strong geomagnetic storm.

“CMEs (coronal mass ejections) are explosions of plasma and magnetic fields from the sun’s corona. They cause geomagnetic storms when they are directed at Earth... Geomagnetic storms can impact infrastructure in near-Earth orbit and on Earth’s surface, potentially disrupting communications, the electric power grid, navigation, radio and satellite operations... Geomagnetic storms can also trigger spectacular displays of aurora on Earth.”

NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center

Sightings have also been reported across the country and all over the world.

With more opportunities to spot them into the weekend, the best way to view the aurora borealis in South Central Texas is at a location away from city lights. Because of the sensitivity to light, phone cameras have also been proven to spot the colors better than the naked eye. Best timing is 10 p.m. to 2 a.m., but clouds may block viewing Saturday and Sunday night.

Check out some of the photos sent into KSAT Connect:

Mary Wong

Spring Branch, Tx

Spring Branch

Aurora Borealis, Bandera Tx Shot straight up at the sky

Coach Trevino

Northern Lights

San Antonio
Robert Lozano

The Northern lights taken from our driveway in Bulverde!

Julie Kuehn Gormley

Aurora borealis in Boerne !

Justin J

Some shots of the Northern Lights in Spring Branch.

Spring Branch

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About the Authors

Meteorologist Mia Montgomery joined the KSAT Weather Authority Team in September 2022. As a Floresville native, Mia grew up in the San Antonio area and always knew that she wanted to return home. She previously worked as a meteorologist at KBTX in Bryan-College Station and is a fourth-generation Aggie.

Sarah Spivey is a San Antonio native who grew up watching KSAT. She has been a proud member of the KSAT Weather Authority Team since 2017. Sarah is a Clark High School and Texas A&M University graduate. She previously worked at KTEN News. When Sarah is not busy forecasting, she enjoys hanging out with her husband and cat, and playing music.

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