This weekend’s meteor shower, tricks for seeing Orionides

Although its peak has already passed, we can still enjoy the most spectacular meteor shower of the year. For many fans, this event is more anticipated than the Perseids, but its summer sisters have become more popular because August nights are kinder than September. Anyone who wants to scan the sky in search of “shooting stars” should be brave and, if possible, put on some feathers, because the minimum temperature will not exceed 15ºC in many parts of the peninsula, in others, it will reach around. 0ºC. With this threat of heat hanging over our heads, Orionids must have good reasons to get out of our duvet. And, thankfully, they have. First is its speed: More than 238 thousand kilometers per hourSlightly more than the Perseids (210,000 km/h).

Orianides is an echo of the famous Halley’s Comet. As they pass through our neighborhood, comets leave a trail like a breadcrumb trail. Once they leave as we cross that path each year, a fraction of it hits our atmosphere, heats up and burns up. That’s what we see when we look up at the sky. Fragments of Halley’s Comet burn overhead. Some of these pieces were published in 1266, but others in 1198 or 911.. Let’s remember that Halley’s Comet passes by roughly every 76 years (it will return in 2061 after its last visit in 1986), but not always in this particular wake. However, it must be recognized that their numbers are more modest than those of Perseids. While these can reach 200 flashes every hour, the Orionids are 10 times less.

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Meteor showers are a great way for amateurs to get close to astronomy. They are very attractive and you don’t need a big one Knowledge of the night sky Enjoy them. However, there are things that can be done to improve the experience and see more of what we can hunt. Perhaps, first, we can emphasize the obvious: search A clear sky. There is little we can do to clear the night, but it is in our power to visit nearby towns where less cloudy skies are expected. Likewise, it is better to look for a high place to control the horizon, without suitable obstacles standing between us and the horizon.. Finally, it’s a good idea to stay away from cities and towns with too much light Light pollution map Try to move from your area and from the bright areas, we leave on an opposite side that we observe in search of Orionids.

The latter is important because the Orionids get their name precisely from a specific point in the night sky. Orion, the Orion, is one of the most visible and spectacular constellations in the winter sky.. The meteors that light up the night radiate from this spot, moving away from it as they burn. We can use free apps to find it Google Sky, which will allow us to easily locate the Orion constellation, in which direction we should look each night. However, we must be careful Put the app in its night mode, which limits the screen brightness to red tones. Beyond pure aesthetics, red light plays a fundamental role because it lacks enough energy to acclimate our eyes to darkness, allowing our visual acuity to remain sharp during stargazing. However, it is not difficult to find it with the naked eye. Its most distinctive feature is the three Marys, a trio of stars seemingly perfectly aligned.

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Best of all, we don’t need anything else to think about, Orionides, maybe a thermos and some music, but space provides the rest.

I do not know:

  • That object that passes through the atmosphere when it burns up has a specific name, it is called a meteor, or if it is really bright, it is called a bolt. They are shooting stars. Before they fall into our atmosphere, they are called meteorites, and if they survive the descent and reach the surface of the Earth, we call them meteorites. It is important to remember that a meteorite is smaller than an asteroid, if we are strictly and 100 micrometers in diameter, up to 50 meters.

Notes (MLA):

  • NASA “Orianids | Look at the sky”. NASA, 2020,
  • NASA “Orianids”. NASA Science, 2020,

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