Science

Spectacular Orionid meteor shower could be visible from Longford tonight

Spectacular Orionid meteor shower could be visible from Longford tonight

And the very best time for stargazers to see the shower is just after midnight, AccuWeather reports.

It'll be an incredible sight, as the brightness of Orionid meteors is rarely rivaled, according to Business Insider.

The shower is visible throughout October, but is expected to reach its peak on Saturday night into Sunday morning, when the new crescent moon sets before the Earth's rotation brings the meteors up from the east.

So what exactly is it? "The best chance of seeing them will be in the early hours before dawn". Don't worry - Newsround's got you covered.

This meteor shower is famous because it derives from material trailing behind the best-known comet, Comet 1P/Halley. You can find that out here.

The meteor shower will be most active from 2am and 4am.

The Orionids happen each year in mid-October and sometimes into November.

The particles come from Halley's Comet, which passes near Earth every 75 or 76 years.

Image copyright Digital Vision.

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"Earth is passing through a stream of debris from Halley's Comet, the source of the Orionids", Bill Cooke of NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office says in a media release.

The shower takes its name, as many do, from the constellation from which meteors seem to radiate: Orion the Hunter, the stately constellation now striding overhead nightly.

The Orionids will be the brightest at 2 a.m. on both October 21 and October 22, says Cooke.

The darker location you visit, the brighter the meteors will appear in the sky.

To see the shower, get as far away from city lights as possible.

When there are numerous rocks at the same time, this is known as a meteor shower.

Environment Canada is calling for a clear sky tonight, but if it turns out that isn't the case where you live, or there is too much light pollution, NASA will be broadcasting the celestial event via Upstream tonight starting at 7 p.m.

Across Canada you'll be able to catch a glimpse of this sky spectacle.