Lyrid Meteor Shower To Be Witnessed In These Indian Cities Today

Debris fields are created when comets pass through leaving chunks behind

The annual Lyrid Meteor Shower will be visible in Indian skies from tonight till April 29. The moon however could prevent people to be able to witness the phenomenon due to its brightness. Astronomers have long held that due to the brightness of the moon, meteor showers are best observed in the early morning right before dawn. This time the moon is expected to play spoil sport as well, reducing the visibility by 20-25 percent. Experts have said there will be at least 10-15 meteors every hour and can be visible from Delhi, Kolkata as well as certain other parts of the country. The peak will happen at 8:31 PM IST.

The Lyrid meteors according to NASA have been observed for the last 2,700 years and are well known to leave behind glowing dust trails and streaks in the night sky as they pass through. Named after the Lyra constellation of stars, the meteors are part of a debris field left behind by Comet Thatcher which is currently hurtling through the solar system away from the Sun. It will reverse its trajectory in another 45 years. The comet is classified as a long period comet and it takes it 415 years to orbit the sun once.

Debris fields are created when comets pass through leaving chunks behind. Depending on the position of the Earth in its rotation, when it reaches these debris fields many chunks burn up in the atmosphere to create meteor showers. The Lyrid Meteor shower will be ending the drought of nearly 3 months of the Earth not witnessing shooting stars.


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