Published: Fri, April 20, 2018
Money | By Armando Alvarado

Lyrid meteor shower to be highlight of CCCC star party

Lyrid meteor shower to be highlight of CCCC star party

According to blogger Dave Samuhel, you'll be able to view the shower best post midnight on April 22 since the moon will set around that time, thus decreasing atmospheric light - this would let the burning comet debris shine brighter.

The Lyrid meteor shower began April 16 and will continue through April 25, but it appears this weekend will be prime time for meteor viewing. Though not as impressive as the Perseids in August or the Geminids in December (with up to 100 meteors per hour), the Lyrids are still a sight worth seeing. The comet that the debris falls from is known to take 415.5 years to go around the sun, and the meteor shower it causes is the first recorded one in history, mentions going as far back as 687 BC.

Vega will appear to rise from the northeast around 9 p.m. local daylight time, but by 4 a.m., it will have climbed to a point in the sky almost overhead. National Weather Service has forecasted clear skies for almost the western half of the U.S and the immediate Eastern Seaboard.

The hourly rates of the meteors streaking can reach 10 to 20 meteors, which means skywatchers will need to be well-prepared to spot them.

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Keep your heads up at night this weekend to witness a spectacular celestial show as scientists expect the Lyrid meteor shower to peak shortly before dawn on April 22.

No special equipment will be necessary to view, though the weather will be a factor contributing to visibility.

"The shower will be best viewed after midnight when the radiant is highest in the sky".

During the star party, the night sky will also feature Venus, the brightest planet; Jupiter, the second brightest; Sirius, the brightest star; Leo the Lion, the constellation that marks spring; and the brightest cluster of stars known as Seven Sisters. You might want to lie down on a long lounge chair where you can get a good view of the sky, and be sure to give your eyes plenty of time to adjust to the dark. You can see a map of light pollution here and more info on the Lyrids here.

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