The Taurid Meteor Shower is an annual meteor shower that occurs every November in the Northern Hemisphere. The Taurids put on a rather modest show, especially compared to the August ones. Perseids meteor shower or december Geminid meteors… During peak hours of the Taurid meteor shower, you can see about half a dozen falling stars an hour at best. Otherwise, you might not even notice the quiet star show overhead.
But the Taurid meteor shower is special in itself, as this show is known for the occasional birth of balls of fire.
A typical meteor forms when a piece of cosmic dust the size of a lentil or coffee bean burns up in Earth’s atmosphere and flies across the sky so quickly that it literally disappears in the blink of an eye. On the other hand, fireballs form when larger objects, the size of peanuts and grapes, or even larger ones, zip through the atmosphere.
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According to NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Objects, fireballs move much slower than regular meteors and appear to be almost bouncing across the sky, often flashing multiple times before disappearing. Some fireballs can be so bright that they cast shadows and leave behind a ghostly trail of smoke that swirls and swirls for several minutes before disappearing.
What causes the Taurid meteor shower?
Meteor showers happen when Earth passes through the stream of cosmic dust left by cometand in the case of the Taurids, this comet is Comet 2P / Encke, a 1.5 mile (2.4 km) wide block of ice and dust that orbits the Sun every 3.3 years. NASA…
Every time this comet bends around Sun it leaves behind fresh dust, and if the Earth passes through a particularly dense band or trail, we will see more meteors and fireballs than usual. This happened in 2005 and 2015, which suggests a 10-year cycle of increased activity, according to a 2017 study published in the journal. Royal Astronomical Society Monthly Notices… This pattern suggests that 2025 will be the next “improved” Taurid show, but fireballs could appear in any year.
How to watch the Taurid meteor shower
Meteor showers are astronomical phenomena that occur with the naked eye. Telescopes and binoculars – very useful for observing hazy galaxies, glittering star clusters and feathery comet tails – are not suitable for observing shooting stars because they appear by chance and move too fast across the sky to be followed.
While you will be able to see some of the Taurids from your back garden, you will have a much better view if you find a spot in the dark, away from light pollution caused by streetlights and bright lights that illuminate offices and other buildings everywhere. night.
Once you’ve found a place with a dark sky, you need to wait at least half an hour for your eyes to adapt to the dark. Then you just have to wait until you see your first meteor.
Watching a meteor shower – especially with a low activity level like the Taurids – takes a lot of patience. Find a comfortable place, wrap yourself in warm clothes, and consider going with someone to keep you company while you wait. There may be large gaps of several minutes between meteor observations.
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The Taurid Meteor Shower gets its name from the fact that all of its meteors seem to come from the constellation Taurus. To find Taurus, look east towards the constellation Orion the Hunter, shining low in the sky. Use Orion’s “belt” of three blue and white stars as a guide and follow it to the upper right corner where you will see a “V” star lying on its side. This is the Hyades star cluster, which represents the horns of Taurus, the bull. A little further down, you’ll see a miniature-sized knot of stars that looks like a mini-version of the Big Dipper. This is the Pleiades star cluster, and all the Taurid meteors seem to elude it.
When to watch the Taurids
This year, the Taurid shower will peak over the night of November 11-12, but you can see several meteors in the nights before and after the peak. This year’s peak coincides with the moon’s 55% illumination, which will reduce the number of faint meteors visible, but not bright enough to drown out brighter fireballs.
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