The Orionid meteor shower is peaking tonight! This is how...

The Orionid meteor shower is peaking tonight! This is how...
The Orionid meteor shower is peaking tonight! This is how...
The Orionid meteor shower will peak tonight (October 20-21), and the moon is so dark that sky watchers may see one or more of these falling stars.

The bright streaks across the sky that humans can see from now through early November are parts of Halley’s comet. Although the comet will only be visible from Earth in about four decades, it is leaving a debris path in the solar system. And every year in mid-October the earth crosses this field. Our planet passes another part of this debris field at the beginning of May, which leads to the Eta Aquarid meteor shower.

The Orionid meteors are known for their speed, according to NASA, as they move into the earth’s atmosphere at a speed of 66 km / s. The meteor shower takes its name from its radiation, which is the point in the sky from which the streaks appear to emanate. The Orionid Ray is located near the constellation Orion, the hunter, next to the warrior’s raised arm.

Connected: How to see the best meteor showers of 2020

Skywatchers can search for Orion every morning around the summit, October 20-21, before dawn. The structure can be seen here from mid-northern latitudes. Although the radiation or the origin of the meteors is in Orion, meteors can appear far away from the constellation. (Photo credit: Starry Night Software)

The longer stripes appear outside the radiator. The best way to see meteors is to either find a place to lie flat on the ground for at least an hour or to look at the part of the sky that is slightly higher than the location of the constellation Orion.

Astrophotographer Jeff Berkes captured this amazing photo of an Orionid meteor grazing over a lake in Elverson, Pennsylvania on October 22, 2011 during the height of the annual Orionid meteor shower. (Image credit: Jeff Berkes)

If possible, find a place with low light pollution. Apps are great for finding constellations. However, remember to avoid looking at a phone screen while watching the meteor shower. It takes time for the human eye to adjust to the night sky, and a bright light can interfere with the eye training required to spot weaker meteors.

According to NASA, the moon will be a growing crescent during the shower summit, so the small moonlight emanating from this lunar streak does not flood the sky during the meteor shower. This makes it easier for the viewer to recognize falling stars. According to Bill Cooke, head of NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office, viewers can expect around 10 to 20 meteors per hour.

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