Draconid Meteor Shower Shimmers In Night Sky

Posted: Oct 9 2015, 10:03pm CDT | by , Updated: Oct 10 2015, 2:55pm CDT, in News | Latest Science News

 
Draconid Meteor Shower Shimmers in Night Sky
Comet of Draconids, NASA

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The meteor shower peaked Thursday evening and was seen throughout the Northern Hemisphere.

The Draconids meteor shower put on a magnificent celestial display on in the night skies. It peaked late Thursday evening (October 8) and continued until the morning of Friday (October 9).

Draconids is an occasional meteor shower which is caused by the dust and debris of a periodic comet and fall earthwards every year.

Draconids are located near the head of the constellation Draco the Dragon in the Northern sky, so they are visible througout the Northern Hemisphere but it is not anything like cosmic fireworks as only 10 meteors are expected to be seen in an hour and according to NASA, they could be so few in numbers that it is a possibility that a casual observer may not even notice them.

The current moon phase is favorable to see this meteor shower. Since the moon is a waning crescent and the backdrop is darker than usual, a sharp observer should be able to spot one or two during the process.

The brightness of meteors depends on the size and speed of the Draconids. So, it requires a massive Draconid to produce really spectacular, visible light. But this year’s Draconids are expected to move slowly at a pace of 40,000 miles per hour. This real dramatic kind of outburst is forecasted in 2018.

Unlike many other meteor showers, the best time to view Draconids meteor shower is in the evening hours rather than late midnight or early hours in the morning.

If you miss the chance to watch Thursday and Friday, then don’t get upset. There will be another meteor shower visible later this month on the night of October 21 to the morning of October 22 and it is predicted to be an even better show because 20 meteors will be seen per hour.

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