Fire in the sky: Orionid and Draconid meteor showers peak in October

Be ready for a fiery October 2015.

The Orionid meteor shower and the more powerful Draconid meteor shower are peaking this month… Fire in the sky.

 

 

During October there are two meteor showers of any importance: The Draconid and the Orionid meteor showers.

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Debris from the Halley’s comet produces the Orionid meteor shower that peaks on October 21, 2015. Picture: NASA/ESA/Max-Planck-Institute for Solar System Research

The Draconids peak in the night of October 8-9. This minor shower produces ten or less fireballs per hour. Best time to observe is between sunset and midnight when the constellation Draco is highest in the northern sky.

The stronger Orionid meteor shower will peak in the night of October 20-21, when the Earth passes through the remnants of Halley’s Comet. This shower produces about 20 or so yellow and green meteors per hour which disintegrate in our atmosphere at around 41.6 miles per second. Look for persistent dust trains as the fireballs blaze across the sky. Maximize your meteor sighting by observing between midnight and dawn.

Another rare astronomical phenomenon, the Planet Parade, is also currently under way. And that’s awesome.

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