Orionid meteor shower peaks this week

Milky Way and Meteor from Roa Island GRAHAM KIDD

Are you ready for it? The shower is called the Orionids because of where it appears in our sky.

"Nonetheless, tonight we have no bright moon to interfere with observations, so dedicated observers might want to try". Clouds will increase Friday night, making it hard to view.

To get the best view of the meteor shower leave the city and head for the French countryside away from artificial lights.

It's actually been going on for most of October, and will continue through to the start of November, but the optimum time to witness something spectacular is from midnight tonight and before dawn tomorrow morning (pre 7am). There could be as many as 10-15 meteors per hour. The Orionid meteors are space dust from Halley's Comet.

Unlike previous year, which coincided with a bright moon, a new moon just a few days ago means the sky will be mostly clear of celestial light pollution. The key to viewing meteor showers is patience.

The Orionid meteor shower, so named because they appear to originate from the Orion constellation, is visible from anywhere on the planet.

The meteors will be seen worldwide, according to NASA, but for Oklahomans, the best viewing will be in far western Oklahoma, or in any state west of the state lane, except California, where smoke from the wildfires will make viewing hard.

To watch, look toward the constellation Orion, which rises in the east around 11 p.m.

If you're agoraphobic and/or lazy and/or the weather in your area is bad, feel free to watch the meteor shower from the comfort of your bed.

"Orionid meteors often leave longer trails than Perseid meteors, and have a more-pronounced bluish colour".

Another bonus: Skywatchers across the highly populated eastern USA should have clear skies for viewing the Orionids, according to AccuWeather meteorologist and astronomy blogger Dave Samuhel.

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