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Tuesday, September 16, 2014 - 10:42am

Meteor shower tonight!

Meteor shower tonight!
MGN Online
Weather Talk

POSTED: Monday, April 21, 2014 - 7:28pm

UPDATED: Monday, April 21, 2014 - 7:41pm

Look up at the sky tonight and pray the moon isn't a distraction!

Tonight is the night to see the Lyrid Shower!

Although it's not  the biggest meteor shower this year, it is one worth staying up late for.

The annual Lyrid meteor shower peaks this year on the morning of Earth Day, April 22, but will be visible for much of the week.

We are anticipating clear skies for tonight with an overnight low of 63° and light winds, perfect weather for a perfect night right?

Not exactly.

Looks like the moon will be a third wheel in this star gazing opportunity.

Astronomers are calling it a 'waning gibbous' moon, which is more than half a full moon and will make watching for the falling stars less a thrill than in some years.

Forecasters expect 10 to 20 meteors per hour, although outbursts as high as 100 meteors per hour are possible, so make sure you stay up to catch all the action.

The best time to catch the show is around midnight through dawn.

You can find the Lyrid meteors streaming from the bright star Vega in the constellation Lyra, for all you star gazers!

So what exactly is the appropriate way to enjoy this cosmic phenomenon?

First off dress warmly, although we are expecting to dip to the 60's it might still feel a little chilly to some.

Bring a reclining chair, or spread a thick blanket over a flat spot of ground, and invite meteor gazing companions!

Lie down and look up somewhat toward the east.

Meteors can appear in any part of the sky, although their trails will tend to point back toward the radiant, in this case toward Vega.

For those who don't know where Vega is, it is is a brilliant blue-white star about three times wider than our Sun and 25 light years away.

You might have seen Vega in Carl Sagan's movie Contact. It was the source of alien radio transmissions to Earth.

But you can find it in the Northeastern sky!

If you can't catch the fun then you can live stream it on www.slooh.com. NASA's webcast will begin at 8:30 p.m. EDT

You can follow NASA's live webcast directly at:
http://www.nasa.gov/topics/solarsystem/features/watchtheskies/lyrids-ustream-2014.html.

 

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