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Draconid Meteor Shower to Light Up October Sky -- Here's How to Watch It

Oct 05, 2016 04:57 AM EDT
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The Annual Perseid Meteor Shower From Bryce Canyon National Park
The Draconid meteor shower will peak this Oct. 7 with a projected number of 10 to 20 fireballs per hour.
(Photo : Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

The Perseid meteor shower had been the most spectacular astronomical show this year, but before the year ends stargazers can expect a couple more meteor showers including the Draconids that will light up the sky this Oct. 7.

Draconid meteor shower will peak on Oct. 7, but before heading out to look for shooting stars, here are the important things to learn about the latest celestial show. 

Like Perseids, Draconid meteor shower occurs every year. The fireballs originate from the constellation Draco. Draconids is also sometimes called Giacobinids because the comet debris comes from Giacobini-Zinner comet. The comet's tail containing the debris comes in contact with Earth's orbit. When the space rocks hit the Earth's atmosphere they burn into fireballs causing shooting stars and meteor showers.

But what is interesting about Draconid is that experts say it's a "hit-or-miss" phenomenon. There is no telling whether or not the show will be extravagant or less than average until the shower peaks. This is the reason why stargazers are excited to see what Draconid meteor shower has to offer this year. In 1933 and 1946, Draconids offered a rare spectacular meteor shower, however, the succeeding years were not as extravagant, according to a report. But this does not lessen the anticipation of stargazers who are preparing to see the meteor shower.

Unlike other meteor showers, Draconids will be easier to spot as it flies in all directions making it visible to many. The shower is expected to last until Oct. 8 and will be most visible by looking at the further northern region of the sky.

The projected number of meteors during the Draconid meteor shower is around 10-20 fireballs per hour, however, as history suggests, there is a chance that Draconid may surprise stargazers by delivering more than the projected numbers. The shower can easily be spotted even without a telescope but it is strongly advised to go away from light polluted areas to avoid obstructions. Stargazers are also advised to bring something to lie down to because the meteor shower may appear faint nearing a full moon so patience is also strongly advised.

Draconids will be visible in North America, Europe and Asia with a chance of visibility to those living near the equator and the Southern hemisphere, as per Time and Date,.

 

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