A meteor from the Leonids meteor bathe, seen as a diagonal streak between the fingers of a cactus plant, is seen on this time publicity early Sunday, Nov. 18, 2001, in Tucson, Ariz.(Photo: James S. Wood, Associated Press)
Be positive to maintain an eye fixed to the sky this weekend: The peak of the Leonid meteor bathe— an annual mid-November deal with — shall be seen throughout the evening sky late Friday evening and early Saturday morning.
The Leonids look like coming from the constellation Leo the Lion (therefore their identify) within the east, however they need to be seen all the best way throughout the sky.
Some of the best meteor showers ever seen have been the Leonids. Some years, they have been a full-fledged meteor storm: The 1833 Leonid meteor storm included charges as excessive as a tremendous 100,000 meteors per hour, Earthsky.org stated.
No such storm is forecast this 12 months, although: Viewers ought to see an hourly charge of some 10 to 20 meteors.
Also generally known as “shooting stars,” the meteors are literally leftover comet mud. They’re tiny pea- and sand-sized bits of mud and particles crumbling off the Tempel-Tuttle comet because it swings by the Earth. (Earth’s orbit takes it straight via the particles path.) The mud and particles ignite when it hits our environment.
As with most meteor showers, the perfect time to observe the Leonids is normally between the hours of midnight and daybreak, based on Earthsky.org.
David Samuhel, a meteorologist and astronomy blogger at AccuWeather, stated folks ought to dedicate a minimum of an hour to viewing the meteor bathe. “Do not look at any light source during that hour like a phone, flashlight, or any type of screen,” he stated. “Your eyes will regularly alter by a half hour, then you’ll have excellent evening imaginative and prescient. You additionally need to lay as flat as doable so you possibly can see as a lot of the sky as doable.”
The keys to good views of the bathe are the part of the moon and the climate.
First, there’s excellent news in regards to the moon: This 12 months, visibility shall be wonderful as a result of the brand new moon will happen Nov. 18, offering an ideal view of the meteors, which is not going to be washed out by any lunar mild, Space.com stated.
As for the climate Friday evening and early Saturday morning, it is a combined bag. The greatest viewing circumstances must be within the Southwest, the Rockies and alongside the Southeast coast, AccuWeather stated.
But people within the Midwest and Northeast will not be so fortunate: “A big storm system shall be shifting from the Plains into the Great Lakes, and cloudy skies are forecast to dominate a lot of the japanese half of the nation,” said AccuWeather meteorologist Kyle Elliot. “Rain and thunderstorms will put a fair larger damper on viewing circumstances in lots of of those areas.”
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