The Aurora Ovation Model Explained


The Aurora Ovation Model Explained

Ovation Map

The OVATION model is the well known image you see on most Aurora forecasting websites.  The OVATION (Oval Variation, Assessment, Tracking, Intensity, and Online Nowcasting) was developed by the team at John Hopkins University and is shown as an oval depicted from above. The image shows the intensity of the solar winds and magnetic field to forecast where the Northern Lights may be visible and their intensity.

The image as seen above is provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and is updated every 30 minutes and is universally recognized as one of the most accurate predictions of the Aurora Borealis.

How to Read the OVATION Model

The OVATION model shows the location and strength of predicted aurora activity and is valid for the time on the top of the image. To calculate the forecast, the solar wind and magnetic field information is taken into consideration.  As the aurora cannot be observed during the day, the map also shows the current position of the sun. The colors on the map change as the aurora intensity giving a great indication on the likelihood of seeing it in your current location.

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