Orionid meteor shower peaks this week


"As Comet Halley moves through space, it leaves debris in its wake that strikes Earth's atmosphere most fully around October 20-22, every year".

"But the anticipated rate of meteors is only a fraction of the popular summer meteor shower, the Perseids".

This year's Orionid meteor shower should be especially good because there will be little moonlight that could otherwise drown out the meteors.

The meteors you see are particles that were shed by Comet 1P/Halley, which is known in popular culture as Halley's Comet.

The Orionids are meteors that originate from the dust left behind by Halley's Comet.

Unlike last year with its waning supermoon getting in the way, this year's dark skies will mean great viewing for the annual Orionid meteor shower.

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"Look near Orion's club in the hours before dawn and you may see up to 10 to 15 meteors per hour", said Jane Houston Jones, from Nasa's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Just make sure you head to somewhere remote, with no light pollution or tall buildings/trees in the way.

Stargazers are in for a treat this weekend as the Orionid Meteor Shower reaches its peak this weekend. Ultimately, the view from a higher vantage point, such as a hill or mountain, is best.

NASA advises meteor watchers to lie on their backs with their feet facing southeast (if you are in the Northern Hemisphere) and to give your eyes at least a half hour to adapt to the dark.

Katherine Hunt, Planetarium Manager at Ingram Planetarium said the best chance to catch a glimpse of the shower is to look to the east early Saturday morning, before dawn.

"Meteors can appear anywhere in the sky, though if you have to pick a direction, you might fare slightly better looking east".