Saturday, April 21, 2007

Shooting Stars

The good weather a month ago gave us an uninterupted look at the lunar eclipse but tomorrow, Sunday, mark your diaries for some shooting stars as the annual Lyrid meteor shower is back.

The Lyrids are one of the oldest known meteor showers, with records going back to 687BC, thanks to ancient Chinese astronomers.

The number of meteors in any shower has diminished over the years, but it could still be worth staying up late for. There is no suggestion that this will happen this year, but in 1982 everyone got a bit of a shock when the display reached peak rates of around 200 shooting stars per hour.

The show should be at its best on Sunday night through into Monday morning, with a peak rate of around 10-20 meteors per hour. The light from the waxing moon will be less of a distraction after midnight.

Ed. By the way, the comment thread om immigration, further below, is one of the best debates I've seen here in a long time. Feel free to join in with your own views.

1 comment:

sue said...

Thanks for the heads up re meteors, I will try and stay awake.