New York- The dark night from Wednesday to Thursday morning would be the perfect setting for one of the specials spread throughout the year when sky watchers see a meteor shower where many flares are likely to erupt in the darkness.
Meteor showers occur when our planet collides with a field of debris left by icy comets or rocky asteroids orbiting the sun. These tiny particles burn up in the atmosphere, creating dazzling light trails. The mechanical regularity of the orbit means that any meteor showers occur around the same time each year.
The last rain is Eta Aquariids, sometimes it is spelled Eta Aquarids. It has been active since April 15 and runs through May 27, but will peak on Wednesday night until early Thursday morning.
The Eta Aquarids are one of two showers from the debris field of Halley’s Comet, along with the Orionids, in October. The debris will enter through the Earth’s equator, which means it will be visible in both hemispheres around the world.
Moonlight will be at its lowest during peak hours, which should be between 3 a.m. and twilight on Thursday. But the pigeon should be very active for about a week after this date. In recent years, Eta Aquarids have produced between 45 and 85 meteors per hour under dark sky conditions.
There are more meteor showers in the future.
How do you see a meteor
Best practice is to get out in the field and stay as far away from artificial light sources as possible. People in rural areas can only afford to go out. But city dwellers also have options.
Many cities have an astronomical community that maintains a designated dark sky area. “I would suggest calling them and finding out where they are,” said Robert Lunsford, Secretary General of Meteor International.
Meteor showers can often be seen when the sky is darkest, after midnight but before sunrise. To see as many meteors as possible, wait 30-45 minutes after you arrive at the viewing site. This will allow your eyes to adjust to the darkness. Then sit back and enjoy the expansive expanse of the night sky. Clear nights, high altitudes, and times when the moon is thin or absent are best. Lunsford suggested a good rule of thumb: “The more stars you can see, the more meteors you can see.”
Binoculars or telescopes are not necessary for a meteor shower and will effectively limit your vision.
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