Leonid Meteor Shower

By: Sabrina Monteiro-Jack and Bryan Lara

Every year around November, the Leonid meteor shower crosses the orbital path of Comet Tempel-Tuttle. We are able to see the Leonids when the Earth passes through the debris left by the Comet Tempel-Tuttle. The comet takes around 33 years to make one orbit around the sun. This shower is named after the constellation, Leo the Lion, because these meteors radiate outward from the vicinity of stars representing the lion’s mane. Tracing the paths of Leonid meteors backward onto the sky’s dome you are able to see the stream near the star, Algieba, in the constellation called Leo. The best time to watch the meteor shower is between the hours of midnight and dawn on November 17. People have reported seeing 20 meteors an hour at its peak. So if you are interested in watching the Leonid meteor shower this year, I suggest that you go to a park away from the city lights early in the morning of November 17. Make sure to bring a blanket so that you can lie down on your back and look at the sky. Do not forget to take some friends along with you, to keep you awake so you can all can experience the show together.