Shiny orionid meteor shower is still active: How to watch the show

Halley Comet in 1986.


Skywatchers gaze upwards. The Orionid meteor shower officially ended Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, but it should still be worth waking up early for the rest of the week. The American Meteor Society estimates that a handful of meteors or more per hour should be visible.

Orionids are considered a major meteor shower based on the amount of visible meteor bodies that can be seen rushing to inevitable doom during its active period, from the first week of October to the first week of November. Runs approx.

Orionids are actually just bits of dust and debris left behind from the famous comet Halley on their previous journeys through the inner solar system. As our planet flows around this time of year every year through a cloud of comet detritus, all of the cosmic gravel and grime creeps into our upper atmosphere and burns in a display that we see as shooting stars and even See that as occasional fireballs.

Orionids can quote the old phrase “eyelid and you can miss it” as they enter our atmosphere at extremely high speeds of about 147,000 mph (66 kilometers per second). That said, a fair amount of these meteors leave frequent trails that last for a few seconds. Some even fell to pieces in a more spectacular way.

To catch the show, the advice is the same for all celestial audience events: explore a location away from light pollution with a wide open view of the night sky. Bundle if necessary, lie back, relax and adjust your eyes. You do not need to focus on any part of the sky, but the orionids are named because their marks appear to originate from the same general area of ​​the sky as the constellations Orion and Bright star beteleuse.

The best time to see Orionids in 2020 was probably the morning before October 21, but this shower is known for an extended peak, so you should have a good chance of seeing some meteors when you wake up. On Thursdays and weekends as well.

Moon Peak will set before the viewing hours of the morning, so that this year may be another perk. Enjoy the show and as always, share with me any great meteor shot captured on Twitter @EricCMack.

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