When to watch, where to look

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Meteor lovers, your annual mid-November bonus is on the way.

The peak of the Leonid meteor shower will streak across the sky on the night of November 17-18, 2023. The annual spectacle occurs when Earth passes through the debris field left by the planet. Comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle.

This year, under a dark sky after moonset, you may see 10 to 15 meteors per hour. EarthSky He said.

The leonides appear to be coming from the constellation Leo the Lion (hence its name) in the east, but they should be visible all the way across the sky.

When is the Leonid meteor shower?

This year, Leonids have been active since November 3 and will remain active until December 2.

But to see the peak of the showers, “watch late on the night of November 17 until dawn on November 18.” Deborah Baird of EarthSky He said. “The morning of November 17 may also be useful.”

What is the Leonid meteor shower?

Meteors are actually small, pea-sized pieces of dust, debris, and sand that break up from Comet Tempel-Tuttle as it oscillates near Earth. (Earth’s orbit takes it directly across the debris path.) Dust and debris ignite when they strike our atmosphere.

“When comets orbit the sun, they leave behind dust in their orbits,” he said. Theodore Carrettapostdoctoral researcher at Lowell Observatory (Flagstaff, Arizona).

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“Meteor showers occur when the Earth crosses one of the cometary dust trails and the dust burns up in our atmosphere. How much dust is in the trail, at what angle the Earth crosses it and at what time of year it happens are all factors that affect where we should look, and when to look.” , and whether or not the meteor shower is truly amazing.

Where to see Leonids?

“People should look eastward from a dark sky location. Think national forests, state parks and other places away from major cities,” Caretta said.

“If you’re trying to see meteorites with the naked eye, you have to give your eyes time to adjust. Some meteorites can be faint, so plus find a dark place to stare at night,” he said. From the sky, you should also give yourself 20 to 30 minutes to allow your eyes to get used to the low-light conditions.

Fortunately for sky watchers, leonides are often bright meteors with a high percentage of persistent trains, according to American Meteor Society.

Leonids produced meteorite “storms.”

Some of the greatest meteor showers ever seen were leonides. Some years, it was a complete meteorite “storm.” The Leonid meteor storm of 1833 included rates as high as 100,000 meteors per hour. EarthSky He said.

Recently, “the rates have been as high as thousands of meteors at a time minute “During a 15-minute period on the morning of November 17, 1966. That night, the Leonid meteors fell, briefly like rain,” Byrd said.

When is the next meteor shower?

There will be other meteor showers in 2023:

  • Gemini: November 19-December. December 24, and peaks from December 13 to 14.
  • Ursides: December 13-24, and the peak December 21-22.
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