Science

Orionid meteor shower expected to peak Friday morning

Sky gazers can get quite the treatment in the early hours of Friday morning, when the Orionid meteor shower is expected to peak, sending a streak of light across the dark skies.

Considered “one of the most beautiful showers of the year,” the Orionids are active from September 26 to November 22 this year, according to NASA. They will be most visible on Friday morning as the Moon will be a thin crescent. at EarthSky.org.

The Orionids travel at 148,000 miles per hour, and because of their speed, fireballs can sometimes form when they enter Earth’s atmosphere, NASA said, giving viewers “light Looking for long bursts of”. With no moon in the night sky, about 15 meteors per hour can be seen at the Orionids peak.

According to NASA, the Orionids can be seen from both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, but are best viewed away from cities and street lights. They are most visible in the hours after midnight.

NASA recommends “Lie on your back with your legs to the southeast if you’re in the Northern Hemisphere, or to the northeast if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere.” You should also be patient, and give your eyes time to adjust to the darkness.

Orionid meteorites are leftover cometary particles and fragments of broken asteroids that originated from Comet 1P/Halley, NASA explained. Halley orbits the Sun once every 76 years, and was last seen from Earth in 1986. The next time it enters the inner Solar System, it will be in 2061.

The meteors are named after the constellation of Orion, NASA said, because it is “the point in the sky from which the Orionids come.”

orionid meteor shower
Meteors of the Orionid meteor shower streak as they pass through the Milkyway in the mountainous region of Tanaurin in northern Lebanon on October 3, 2021.

Ibrahim Chalhoub/AFP/Getty Images


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