As the Earth traverses the trail of a comet Monday, April 16, through Wednesday, April 25, observers in the northern hemisphere, including Pennsylvania, were able to catch a glimpse of the Lyrid meteor shower.
The peak of the shower will arrive in the early hours of Sunday, April 22.
The Lyrids in general are not one of the most showy meteor showers. They usually appear at 10-20 per hour, but in some heavy years observers have reported more than 100 per hour.
A particularly active shower in 1803 led a reporter from Richmond, Virginia, to comment: "From 1 to 3 in the morning, those starry meteors seemed to fall from all points in the sky, in such quantity as to resemble a shower of sky rockets. "
The Lyrids are remnants of Thatcher Comet, which was officially discovered and named by AE Thatcher in her most recent approach to the solar system in 1861. She was expected to return in 2276.
they did not notice the comet, the Chinese astronomers recorded the Lyrid meteors as early as 687 BC
The Lyrids seem to originate from the constellation Lyra, which gives the shower its name, but it looks better looking at the radiant. They are known for the luminous dust trains that remain visible for several seconds.