Adirondack Sky Center
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Astro Quiz 47: Meteor Shower?

Question #47 – What is a meteor shower?


A meteor shower occurs in the night sky when the Earth passes through the path of debris left behind by a comet. The debris, often small as a grain of sand, burns up as it enters the Earth's atmosphere, creating streaks of light.

These streaks of light seem to radiate from one area of the sky. Meteor showers are named after the constellation in that area.

The next big meteor shower visible is the Orionids. Look towards the constellation Orion after midnight on October 21st and 22nd. The comet debris the Earth will pass through was left behind by Halley's Comet.

More information about this year's appearance of the Orionids can be found in this article on Orionid Meteor Shower 2019: When, Where & How to See It

 Orionid Meteors from Orion. Astronomy Picture of the Day, October 30, 2017
Image Credit & Copyright: Lu Shupei

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