Leonid Meteor Shower


Late on Monday night, around 4:00 am EST, the Leonid meteor shower will be in full force. Expected to be better than average this year with about 500 meteors per hour, we should be in for a real treat. The Earth is passing through the debris left by Comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle as it passed through our solar system in 1466.

The image on the left shows Leo at the center, which is where the name originates. The meteors don't actually come "through" Leo, but it gives the viewer the impression that they do. Plus, if you're looking towards Leo, you will have a better chance of seeing them. The image on the right is from Sky and Telescope magazine's article on the event.

A meteor storm is when there are 1000 or more seen per hour, so this will be "half a storm." But, many of the meteor showers we see are around 100 or so per hour, so this should be a real treat. Again, the time to first see them is Monday night, which is technically Tuesday morning. It will be repeated the following night to some degree as well. Either way, you won't likely see much of anything until after midnight. Let me know if you like the show!

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