Profile image
By John Ale (Reporter)
Contributor profile | More stories
Story Views

Last Hour:
Last 24 Hours:

Meteor Shower ALERT: Orionids to Light Up the Night Skies with a Pretty Display of Shooting Stars

Tuesday, October 18, 2016 18:52
% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.

In the early hours of October 21st, the ‘Orionid’ meteor shower will light up the night skies. Every year in mid-to-late October, Earth passes through a stream of dusty debris from comet Halley, and the pre-dawn sky lights up with a pretty display of shooting stars.

Expect to see about 25 meteors per hour, when the shower peaks on Friday morning, Oct. 21st. Because these meteors streak out of the constellation Orion, astronomers call them ‘Orionids.’

The Orionid meteor shower isn’t the strongest but it is one of the most beautiful showers of the year. The reason is its setting. The shower is framed by some of the brightest stars and planets in the heavens.

Constellations such as Taurus, Gemini and Orion provide a glittering backdrop for the display. In the morning of October 21st, blazing pieces of Halley’s comet will light up the sky.

To see the show, experts suggest going outside one to two hours before sunrise, when the sky is dark and the constellation Orion is high overhead. Sit down on a chair with a broad view of the heavens. Although Orionids emerge from a small area near the shoulder of Orion, they will spray across the entire sky.

Be prepared for speed. Meteoroids from Halley’s Comet strike Earth’s atmosphere traveling 148,000 mph. Only the November Leonids are faster. 

Speed is important because fast meteors have a tendency to explode. Occasionally, Orionid fireballs will leave incandescent streams of debris in their wake that linger for minutes.

Such filaments of meteor smoke twisted by upper atmospheric winds into convolutes shapes can be even prettier than the meteors themselves. It really is a wonderful morning to awake. Just don’t plan on going anywhere in a hurry.


Clips, images credit: ESO, ESA/HUBBLE & NASA/JPL 

We encourage you to Share our Reports, Analyses, Breaking News and Videos. Simply Click your Favorite Social Media Button and Share.

Report abuse


Your Comments
Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

Top Stories
Recent Stories



Top Global

Top Alternative



Email this story
Email this story

If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.