Leonid meteors!

Contributed by
Nov 18, 2007

Oh, drat! I forgot to post about the annual Leonids meteor shower, which peaked last night. Well, it's not too late. If you go out tonight you'll still see some. This is generally not a very strong shower, but it does have the occasional storm when hundreds or even thousands of meteors per hour can be seen.

However, this time that is not predicted. Still, it's worth taking a shot. The Moon is first quarter, so it sets by midnight and shouldn't be a problem. Your best bet is to go out around 2:00 a.m. local time and look east and up. Make sure you have access to open sky, since they can appear anywhere! They look like they are coming from the direction of the constellation Leo the lion. Oh-- you might see some Taurids, too, a meteor shower that peaks in a few weeks. The last time I went out to see the Leonids we saw several Taurids; you can tell because they appear to radiate from the constellation Taurus, not Leo, and move at right angles to the general direction of the Leonids.

I have a lot more info (with links) in this post from the 2006 shower, and you can also check out Sky and Telescope for more too.

Tip o' the Whipple Shield to Clifford for reminding me about this!

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