Dark skies mean good Orionid meteor shower viewing

Adjust Comment Print

If the meteors originate from Halley's, why are they called the Orionids? The Orionid Meteor Shower happens every year and follows the Perseid Meteor Shower which peaked in August.

Known as the "Orionid" meteor shower, it takes place between October 20th to October 22nd.

The Orionid meteor shower will light up the night sky tonight, October 20, and tomorrow night as Earth travels through an area of space littered with debris from Halley's Comet, according to NASA.

So what exactly is it? Don't worry - Newsround's got you covered.

If you want to try your hand at catching a few meteors with your camera, check out our night sky photography tips here. You can find that out here.

More news: Lego is celebrating the women of Nasa with four new figures

Meteor showers can be spectacular to observe and, thankfully for amateur astronomers, often can be predictable.

Meteoroids are pebble-sized bits of space debris that become meteors when they flash as they enter the Earth's atmosphere.

Image copyright Digital Vision.

The Orionids are named after the direction from which they appear to radiate, which is near the constellation Orion, Space.com explained.

What makes the Orionids so special is where they come from.

More news: UNESCO: The UN's educational, scientific, cultural agency

So find a dark spot, bring out your blankets and enjoy one of Mother Nature's best light shows.

Cloudy skies will be rolling across the U.S. this weekend.

How can I see the Orionid Meteor Shower? The best viewing, of course, will be away from the city and any light pollution.

The best time to view the meteor shower is between midnight and dawn on Friday or Saturday night from anywhere on Earth.

If you're in an area with more light pollution, a pair of binoculars will help.

More news: Brownwood scout leaders support decision to let girls join

As many as 10 to 20 shooting stars will appear during the annual spectacle, but if the weather conditions are clear, the number could be higher. Choosing an observation point that offers a panoramic view of the sky is a good idea.