Local

How to see the tau Herculids meteor shower in California

Earth is expected to pass through the wreckage of a broken comet on Monday night and early Tuesday morning. It could lead to a brand new meteor shower. Night sky observers in North America have the best chance of seeing the Herculid tau rain, with NASA suggesting around 1 p.m. on the east coast or at 10 p.m. on the west coast until the best hours to see up. The moon is new, so there will be no moonlight to hide the meteors. KCRA 3 meteorologist Eileen Javora says the sky will be clear in Northern California. However, there is no guarantee of a dazzling screen even if the sky is clear and dark, NASA said. The comet, officially known as 73P / Schwassmann-Wachmann, or SW3, was discovered in 1930 by German observers Arnold Schwassmann and Arno Arthur Wachman. It was not located again until the late 1970s and in the 1990s the comet shattered into several pieces, NASA said. When SW3 crossed Earth again in 2006, it was in almost 70 pieces and has continued to fragment further ever since. NASA said observations from the Spitzer Space Telescope released in 2009 showed that some fragments were moving fast enough to be visible, fascinating space scientists. Each year, there are about 30 meteor showers, which occur when the Earth passes through the path of debris left by a comet or asteroid, which are visible to the naked eye. Some meteor showers have been around for centuries. For example, the Perseid meteor shower, which occurs every year in August, was first observed about 2,000 years ago and recorded by Chinese astronomers, NASA said. New meteor showers like this, if they occur, are relatively rare. “All or nothing” Debris from SW3 will hit the Earth’s atmosphere more slowly than other meteor showers and is the speed at which debris hits, not the size of the debris. This causes rain. Even if they are visible, this means that the meteorites would be much fainter, for example, than the eta Aquariids meteorites earlier this month. “This will be an all-or-nothing event. If the wreckage from SW3 traveled more than 220 miles an hour when it left the comet, we could see a nice meteor shower. If the wreckage had slower launch velocities, then nothing would reach “Earth and there will be no meteorites from this comet,” said Bill Cooke, who heads NASA’s Meteorological Office at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. They radiate in the night sky, although Robert Lunsford, secretary general of the International Meteorological Organization, said the Tau Herculids had been misnamed and said they would appear to be radiating from a constellation known as the Boots, northwest of which is bright. as Arcturus (alpha Bootis). “Radiation is expected to be a large area of ​​the sky and not an exact sign μείο. “So any slow meteorite from this general area of ​​the sky can be expected to be from SW3,” Lunsford said in a blog post. “You do not need to look directly over your head, as meteorites can appear anywhere in the sky. They are actually more likely to appear at lower altitudes, as at these altitudes one looks through a much thicker part. more meteor showers If the Herculid rain turns out to be boring, do not be afraid, there are plenty of other opportunities to watch meteor showers this year. The Delta Aquarius looks better than the southern tropics and will peak between July 28 and 29, when the moon is 74% full. Interestingly, another meteor shower is peaking overnight – the Capricorn Alpha. Although this is a much weaker shower, it is known to produce some bright fireballs during its climax. It will be visible to everyone, regardless of which side of the equator they are on. The Perseid meteor shower, the most popular of the year, will peak between August 11 and 12 in the northern hemisphere, when the moon is only 13% full. EarthSky. October 8: Dracons October 21: Orionids November 4 to 5: Southern Bulls November 11 to 12: Northern Bulls November 17:23 December 17:23 December The Ursids –KCRA 3 contributed to this story.

Earth is expected to pass through the wreckage of a broken comet on Monday night and early Tuesday morning. It could lead to a brand new meteor shower.

Night sky observers in North America have the best chance of seeing the Tau Herculid shower, with recommends NASA around 1 p.m. on the east coast or at 10 p.m. on the west coast until the best hours to look up. The moon is new, so there will be no moonlight to hide the meteors.

KCRA 3 meteorologist Eileen Javora says the sky will be clear in Northern California.

However, there is no guarantee of a dazzling screen even if the sky is clear and dark, NASA said. It could lead to nothing.

The comet, officially known as 73P / Schwassmann-Wachmann, or SW3, was discovered in 1930 by German observers Arnold Schwassmann and Arno Arthur Wachman. It was not located again until the late 1970s and in the 1990s the comet shattered into several pieces, NASA said.

When SW3 crossed Earth again in 2006, it was in almost 70 pieces and has continued to fragment further since then, the statement said.

NASA said observations from the Spitzer Space Telescope released in 2009 showed that some fragments were moving fast enough to be visible, fascinating to space scientists.

Each year, there are about 30 meteor showers, which occur when the Earth passes through the traces of debris left by a comet or asteroid, which are visible to the naked eye.

Some meteor showers have been around for centuries. For example, the Perseid meteor shower, which occurs every year in August, was first observed about 2,000 years ago and was recorded by Chinese astronomers. said NASA. New meteor showers like this, if they occur, are relatively rare.

“All or nothing” event

The debris from SW3 will hit the Earth’s atmosphere more slowly than other meteor showers and is the speed at which debris hits, not the size of the debris caused by the rain.

Even if they are visible, this means that meteorites would be much fainter, for example, than the eta Aquariids meteorites earlier this month.

“This will be an all-or-nothing event. If the wreckage from SW3 traveled more than 220 miles an hour when it left the comet, we could see a nice meteor shower. If the wreckage had slower launch velocities, then nothing would reach “Earth and there will be no meteorites from this comet,” said Bill Cooke, who heads NASA’s Meteorological Environment Office at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. he said in a statement.

Meteor showers are often named after the constellation from which they appear to radiate in the night sky, although Robert Lunsford, secretary general of the International Meteorological Organization, said the Tau Heraclides were incorrectly named. He said they would appear to be radiating from a constellation known as Boots, northwest of the bright orange star known as Arcturus (alpha Bootis).

“The radiation is expected to be a large area of ​​the sky and not an exact point. So any slow meteorite from this general area of ​​the sky can be expected to be from SW3,” Lunsford told a suspension.

“You do not need to look directly over your head, as meteorites can appear anywhere in the sky. They are actually more likely to appear at lower altitudes, as at these altitudes one looks through a much thicker part. of the atmosphere that when looking straight up. “

More meteor showers

If the Herculid rain turns out to be boring, do not be afraid, there are many other opportunities to watch meteor showers this year.

The Delta Aquarius looks better than the southern tropics and will peak between July 28 and 29, when the moon is 74% full.

Interestingly, another meteor shower is peaking overnight – the Capricorn Alpha. Although this is a much weaker shower, it is known to produce some bright fireballs during its climax. It will be visible to everyone, regardless of which side of the equator they are on.

The Perseid meteor shower, the most popular of the year, will peak between August 11 and 12 in the northern hemisphere, when the moon is only 13% full.

Here’s the meteor shower schedule for the rest of the year, according to EarthSky meteor shower perspective.

  • October 8: Drakonides
  • October 21: Orionides
  • November 4 to 5: Southern Bulls
  • November 11 to 12: Northern Bulls
  • November 17: Leonides
  • December 13-14: Gemini
  • December 22: Ursides

– KCRA 3 contributed to this story.

How to see the tau Herculids meteor shower in California Source link How to see the tau Herculids meteor shower in California

Related Articles

Back to top button