Watching the Skies: Orionid meteor shower peaks

Watching The Skies

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Perseid meteor showers peaked a few months ago, but another meteor shower is set to put on a show this week.

The peak of the Orionid meteor showers will arrive early in the morning on Wednesday. Tuesday and Thursday will also be good days to try your luck.

Though this meteor shower doesn’t produce as many meteors as the Perseids, there is still the potential to see 10 to 15 meteors per hour under a dark sky. The moon will set in the evening as Orion rises in the east, so no moonlight will pollute the view. Some meteors will be visible in the late evening, but the best time to look will be in the hours before dawn.

The meteors we see in the Orionid meteor shower are debris from the Comet Halley burning up in the earth’s atmosphere. There is no specific place to look for these meteors; you can look in any direction and have equal chance of seeing one. However, if you were to trace the path of a Orionid meteor backwards, you would find the radiant point is the constellation Orion.

Even if you don’t see any meteors, you’ll have a great view of the moon and two planets this week.

The moon will pass by Saturn and Jupiter on the evenings of Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Look south at nightfall to see the trio. Jupiter is the brightest of the two planets, and Saturn is just to the left of Jupiter. The moon will pass below the pair on Wednesday and Thursday, and to the left on Friday.

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