A swarm of fireballs from the Taurid meteor shower has already made November a fiery month for meteors. The arrival of the Leonids may deliver an all-out meteor storm subsequent week. 

Whereas the Taurids are recognized for touring comparatively slowly as they dissipate within the environment and producing a variety of fireballs (particularly this yr), the Leonids are thought of a swift bathe, producing quick, vibrant capturing stars. 

Just a few occasions every century, the Leonids ship an absolute frenzy of fireside within the sky, with a whole bunch and even hundreds of capturing stars seen per hour. 

The trigger is bits of mud, particles and detritus from Comet Tempel-Tuttle. Annually round this time our planet drifts by clouds of comet droppings left behind throughout earlier journeys by the photo voltaic system. And about each 33 years we appear to hit a very dense pocket of matter, leading to such a storm. This occurred most just lately in 2001, which was a little bit of a bonus because it got here simply two years after an anticipated storm in 1999. 

Whereas the subsequent Leonid meteor storm from that department of particles is not anticipated till 2031, these items are unpredictable. In line with the American Meteor Society, there’s a probability we’ll encounter a special mud subject in 2022 linked to the comet’s 1733 go to. This might produce wherever between 50 and greater than 200 meteors per hour within the waning hours of Nov. 18 into the next morning. 

Once more, there are not any ensures for any of this as meteor showers are exceedingly fickle. However the perfect case situation may current just a few excellent nights of sky-watching. The common peak of the Leonids is predicted within the late night hours of Nov. 17 into the pre-dawn the next morning. Count on 10 to 15 meteors per hour beneath preferrred viewing circumstances. The next evening is once we would possibly get an outburst that sees these numbers enhance by an order of magnitude, if we’re fortunate. 

To expertise the spectacle, you may wish to discover an space with a broad view of a cloudless sky and no gentle air pollution. Yow will discover the constellation Leo utilizing an app like Stellarium and orient your self so Leo’s head is within the heart of your subject of view. Leonid meteors will seem to radiate out from this level within the sky, therefore the title. 

It isn’t crucial you orient your self this fashion, because the meteors shall be traversing all around the sky, however it would possibly improve issues. It is in all probability a bit extra vital to maintain the waning moon out of your subject of view in order that it would not wash out any capturing stars. 

When you’re oriented and cozy, simply lay again and loosen up. After your eyes are adjusted, you need to be in your technique to seeing no less than just a few meteors in the event you give the entire expertise a full hour or longer.

Better of luck and joyful recognizing!

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