Wrap up warm and look to the sky this Oc­to­ber

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS -

KEEN stargaz­ers should get ready to view up to 20 amaz­ing ‘shoot­ing stars’ per hour fly across the night sky this month.

The Ori­onid Me­teor Shower is tak­ing place through­out the month, and although it is not quite as spec­tac­u­lar as the Per­seids in August and Gem­i­nids in De­cem­ber, it should still be pos­si­ble to see up to 20 beau­ti­ful me­te­ors an hour.

The Ori­onid show­ers oc­cur ev­ery year in Oc­to­ber when the Earth passes through de­bris cre­ated by Hal­ley’s Comet as the planet or­bits the sun.

The Ori­onid shower is made from de­bris cre­ated by Hal­ley’s Comet, which comes into con­tact with our at­mos­phere ev­ery Oc­to­ber.

Although Hal­ley’s Comet it­self is only vis­i­ble from Earth ev­ery 75 years (the next time will be 2061), its de­bris still causes the im­pres­sive an­nual me­teor shower.

The me­te­ors or ‘shoot­ing stars’ are the re­sult of small par­ti­cles – in some cases as small as a grain of sand – en­ter­ing the Earth’s up­per at­mos­phere at around 130,000mph and light­ing up the night as fast-mov­ing streaks of light.

When and how can I see the me­te­ors?

The me­teor shower is vis­i­ble through­out Oc­to­ber, but peaks in the very early morn­ing of Fri­day Oc­to­ber 21. It will be vis­i­ble un­til Novem­ber 7.

The shower will come from the di­rec­tion of the well-known con­stel­la­tion Orion the Hunter, but you do not need to look at the con­stel­la­tion to see the me­te­ors as they will ap­pear in all parts of the sky.

Just wrap up warm, find a spot of night sky away from the bright lights of cen­tral Lon­don, and look up.

Give your­self at least an hour of ob­serv­ing time as the me­te­ors can come in spurts and are in­ter­spersed with lulls.

We want to see your pho­tos! If you cap­ture the me­teor shower, send your pic­tures to emily.chudy@ trin­i­tymir­ror.com or Tweet @What­sOnGWL .

Photo by Alas­dair MacLeod

Photo by Kev Lewis

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