Look for Orionid meteors

Meteor Shower photo courtesy of NASA

Meteor Shower photo courtesy of NASA

 

Look up! If the night sky is clear where you live watch for the Oronids, a major meteor shower produced by the debris from Halley’s comet.

 

Named for Orion the Hunter because the meteors seem to radiate from the constellation, the Orionids have been already shooting across the sky and will do so into November. But they are peaking now through Oct. 22.

 

They have been known to shoot across the sky at 80 an hour but according to Bill Cooke a NASA they are likely to number from 30 to 40 per hour. They are very fast 148,000 mph so watch carefully.

 

The question is how much a factor is the moon which has waned to its half-phase. The full Hunters Moon has already passed but moonlight may make a difference. However, go to a spot without streetlights and commercial buildings. You won’t want binoculars because you are watching the whole sky.

 

Several astronomy sites have good charts and information on meteors. Take a look at Time and Date, Space and EarthySky.

 

 

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