The Northern Lights may move farther south into the mainland U.S. this week

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, a strong geomagnetic storm caused mainland U.S. storms to hit the mainland this week. Northern lights can be seen in .

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The phenomenon, scientifically known as aurora borealis, usually occurs close to the North Pole near Alaska and Canada.

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But hurricanes could advance aurora lights on south Thursday and Friday, and if weather conditions permit, can be seen in areas of Pennsylvania, Iowa and Oregon.

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During a storm, a coronal hole (which spots appear black on the sun) induces strong winds, which, in turn, trigger coronal mass ejection or CME. A CME projects plasma and sun fragments

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The storm began on Sunday and is expected to reach G3 levels on Thursday — the highest measure of G5 storm intensity — and ends on Friday.

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"Most are expected to have little or no impact on Earth, however, at least four have potential Earth-directed components," NOAA said. "

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What is an aurora?

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But, like a taut rubber band, when it is released, the magnetic field returns, and the force of that recoil creates powerful wave known as Alfven waves that are about 80,000 miles from the ground.

What is an aurora?

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Sometimes electrons ride on these superfast Alfven waves, reaching speeds of 45 million mph as they hurtle downwards.

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