Aurora borealis shine over Cooper Landing on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Cooper Landing, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Virginia Morgan)

Aurora borealis shine over Cooper Landing on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Cooper Landing, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Virginia Morgan)

Readers submit photos of weekend’s aurora

People across Alaska were treated to a dazzling display of the aurora borealis late Sunday night and early Monday morning. The display, which was visible as far south as Juneau, was the result of a strong magnetic storm first forecast by the Space Weather Prediction Center on Sunday afternoon.

That agency, which operates under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, issued a geomagnetic storm watch on Sunday in anticipation of two coronal mass ejections, or large expulsions of plasma from the sun’s corona. Wind speeds were also expected due to a coronal high speed stream, the agency said.

The Space Weather Prediction Center, which measures geomagnetic storms on a scale from one to five, first observed a G3 level storm, considered “strong,” around 1 a.m. EST on Monday.

Per NOAA, the aurora borealis, which are seen near the earth’s northern pole, and the aurora australis, which are seen near the southern pole, occur when electrons collide with the upper reaches of the earth’s atmosphere. Aurora typically form between 50 and 310 feet above the earth’s surface.

The agency forecast moderate G2 storms for late Monday evening and early Tuesday morning. Aurora forecasts and live data can be accessed on the Space Weather Prediction Center at spaceweather.gov.

Reach reporter Ashlyn O’Hara at ashlyn.ohara@peninsulaclarion.com.

Aurora borealis dance on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Mechel Meek)

Aurora borealis dance on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Mechel Meek)

Aurora borealis dance on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Mechel Meek)

Aurora borealis dance on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Mechel Meek)

Aurora borealis dance on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Mechel Meek)

Aurora borealis dance on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Mechel Meek)

Aurora in the Mackey Lake, Alaska area on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Picture courtesy Harold Rudstrom)

Aurora in the Mackey Lake, Alaska area on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Picture courtesy Harold Rudstrom)

Aurora in the Mackey Lake, Alaska area on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Picture courtesy Harold Rudstrom)

Aurora in the Mackey Lake, Alaska area on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Picture courtesy Harold Rudstrom)

Aurora in the Mackey Lake, Alaska, area on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Picture courtesy Harold Rudstrom.

Aurora in the Mackey Lake, Alaska, area on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Picture courtesy Harold Rudstrom.

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 from Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Amber Newton)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 from Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Amber Newton)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 from Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Amber Newton)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 from Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Amber Newton)

The aurora borealis as seen from Kenai, Alaska, on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Photo courtesy Sarah Jane Baisden)

The aurora borealis as seen from Kenai, Alaska, on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Photo courtesy Sarah Jane Baisden)

The aurora borealis light up the sky over Skilak Lake Road in Soldotna, Alaska, on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Photo courtesy April Walgenbach)

The aurora borealis light up the sky over Skilak Lake Road in Soldotna, Alaska, on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023. (Photo courtesy April Walgenbach)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Rachel Karr)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Rachel Karr)

Aurora borealis near Funny River on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Julie Craig)

Aurora borealis near Funny River on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Julie Craig)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Nikiski, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Rachel Olson)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Nikiski, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Rachel Olson)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023, in Nikiski, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Rachel Olson)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023, in Nikiski, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Rachel Olson)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Nikiski, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Rachel Olson)

The aurora borealis as seen on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023 in Nikiski, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Rachel Olson)

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