Tag Archives: KP thresholds

Are the Aurora and Northern Lights Active Now?

Thanks for this question Parin,

Your best bet for determining if there is currently aurora activity is to take a peak at the current KP value. The chart on that page shows the current KP and the expected KP over the next 30-75 minutes. KP is a global scale that ranges from 0 to 9, the higher the value, the more active the aurora is and the closer to the equator it may be visible.

Once you know the current KP, you will want to know if it is possible to see aurora where you are at that KP. This map helps with that:

Global KP boundaries map shows what KP you need to see Aurora
Global KP boundaries map shows what KP you need to see Aurora[/

[caption id="attachment_1365" align="aligncenter" width="689"]Southern Hemisphere KP Maps Southern Hemisphere KP Maps

Find your location on this map, If you are in the Northern Hemisphere the KP level you need is the line to the south of your location. Likewise, if you are in the southern hemisphere the value you need is on the line to the north of your location.

Finally, check your weather. Aurora displays are high in the atmosphere. If it is cloudy, the aurora will be above the clouds and you will not be able to see them.

Happy Hunting