Draconid meteor shower – when it peaks and other key UK dates

Draconid meteor shower - when it peaks and other key UK dates

Eta Aquarids meteor shower

The Eta Aquariids, also known as the Eta Aquariids, are the first of a pair of meteor showers that originate from Halley’s Comet, the most recognized cosmic body of all. This year, the Eta Aquarids rainfall peaked on May 6.

The bad news for those in the UK is that the shower is most impressive in the southern hemisphere, where observers can witness 20-30 meteors per hour during its peak. Meanwhile, stargazers in the Northern Hemisphere can only expect to see half of it.

The shower produces shooting stars when Earth passes along Halley’s debris stream, which in turn creates tiny particles that burn up in the upper atmosphere.

Tau Herculides meteor shower

A newcomer this year, the Herculides Tau shower peaked into the early hours of May 31. The shower had its origins in a comet known as 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann, or “SW3,” which was discovered in 1930 and orbited the Sun every once in a while. 5.4 years

Astronomers later realized that SW3 had broken into several pieces, littering its own orbital track with debris, and by the time it passed in 2006, it was in nearly 70 pieces.

It has continued to fragment even more since then, and experts now predict that the SW3 debris will soon hit Earth’s atmosphere at just 10 miles per second.

Unfortunately for those in the UK, American stargazers were better placed to see the Tau Herculid shower at its peak.

The Delta Aquariids meteor shower

The Delta Aquariids meteor shower peaked on July 30, allowing stargazers to see a steady stream of meteors for several days, but at a low hourly rate.

One of the more moderate meteor showers, the Delta Aquariids kicked off summer in the Northern Hemisphere. Although it was best seen from the Southern Hemisphere, those living in the mid-latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere were still able to see the celestial event.

The meteor shower took its name from the constellation Aquarius, near the bright star Delta Aquarii, in the night sky from which it appeared to travel directly outward.

The Perseid meteor shower

The Perseid meteor shower peaked on August 12-13, 2022, allowing stargazers to witness around 160 to 200 meteors entering Earth’s atmosphere every hour.

The shower is particularly prominent in the Northern Hemisphere, in the pre-dawn hours, and is one of the most popular showers, as if not the strongest, its spectators can enjoy it during the summer.

During their peak, the Perseids shine brightly in the summer sky, when Earth collides with debris particles left behind by Comet Swift-Tuttle.

The rain got its name from the Greek word, Perseidai, which means the children of Perseus in Greek mythology, which refers to the point where they seem to stone.

Unfortunately, the peak fell around the time of the Full Moon in 2022, so light conditions were slightly poor.

Those planning to watch the shower were advised to start around midnight until 5:30 a.m. to increase their chances of spotting the meteors, as the darker the sky, the better, when to spot the meteors. .

How to watch meteor showers in the UK

Not surprisingly, meteor showers are best enjoyed at night, in the darkest conditions.

Meteorologists also suggest avoiding light pollution, so stargazers and photographers alike escape built-up areas and head to the countryside, or a national park, where you can see the showers in all their glory.

Choose a dark place away from stray lights and give yourself at least 20 minutes to properly adapt to total darkness.

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