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Home > News > PTI

Meteor shower on Wednesday night

August 10, 2004 19:33 IST

All space enthusiasts and wish seekers should line up in their terrace on Wednesday night - they are likely to come across colourful shooting stars in the sky provided clouds don't play spoilsport.

The meteor shower, a yearly phenomenon, consists of particles left behind by comets, which are made up of dirty snow and ice, while they orbit around the Sun.

Such debris from the solar system falls on the earth every night but usually its density is low. When the density increases and if Earth happens to cross this debris, we witness a meteor shower.

During a meteor shower, the number of shooting stars may be up to 100, Amitabh Pandey from the Science Popularisation Association of Communicators and Educators (SPACE) said.

The peak timing of the meteor shower is 2am on August 12 when one can spot the maximum number of shooting stars, little colorful particles that appear to radiate in the sky and may travel the entire horizon or burn out in between. There is no need of a telescope and one can view the site with naked eyes.

The stars appear to radiate from one point. This time the meteor shower would appear to radiate from a constellation called Swift Turtle.

Though the time is favourable, observing the phenomenon may be difficult due to the presence of clouds, Pandey said.

Often, each year the period between July 23 and August 20 witnesses the maximum number of meteor showers.

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