Monday, November 16, 2009

Leonid Meteor Shower

I remember sleeping out on the backyard of my house when I was 14 or so, to get up and watch the meteor shower.  There were two or three per minute and it was fantastic.

On the other hand, many meteor showers are more like a drizzle (to a layman like me, anyway) or a fizzle.  Boring!

Still, a friend mentioned on Facebook that the Leonid meteor shower was coming soon.  I hope there's something to see, but I fear there will be too much light-pollution and there will be little to see.


When people hear about an impending meteor shower, their first impression may be of a sky filled with shooting stars pouring down through the sky like rain. Such meteor storms have actually occurred with the annual Leonid meteor shower of November, such as in 1833 and 1966, when meteor rates of literally tens of thousands per hour were observed.
In more recent years, most notably 1999, 2001 and 2002, lesser Leonid displays of up to a few thousand meteors per hour thrilled skywatchers.
This year will be not set any records, but ...
[for] much of Asia, India and Indonesia, the corresponding calendar date will be Nov. 18. It will be 12:40 a.m. in Moscow; 3:10 a.m. in Mumbai; 4:40 a.m. in Jakarta and 5:40 a.m. in Beijing, Unfortunately from Tokyo and across Australia, the sun will have already risen, effectively hiding the meteor outburst.

It is yet possible that some meteors will be seen before the peak.  Tomorrow night and Wednesday morning, we will be on the roof.

Remember, keep looking up!


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