Uranus and the Orionid shower liven up the sky


This October's Orionid meteor shower will peak in the predawn hours of Saturday, Oct. 21. They're actually debris from the famous Halley's Comet.

Of all the annual showers that decorate our night skies, the Orionids have the distinction of being near the top of NASA's most attractive list, thanks to its lucky placement among some of the most brilliant stars visible to the human eye.

Keep your eyes to the sky this weekend: You'll be able to see one of the year's best space shows - the peak of the Orionid meteor shower.

The spectacular shooting stars are remnants of the prolific Halley's Comet, which visits Earth every 74 t0 79 years.

"If you can fearless the cold, make a plan to stay out between midnight and 3am on Sunday morning to give yourself the best chance, and enjoy the thrill of seeing tiny flecks of Halley's Comet disintegrate at hypersonic speeds above your head".

"Meteors can appear anywhere in the sky, though if you have to pick a direction, you might fare slightly better looking east".

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This year will be a particularly good year for viewing the Orionids since the peak of the shower falls just days after the new moon, meaning there will be little natural light pollution for the shower to compete with, AccuWeather said.

Individual meteors have already been dashing across the nigh sky from October 15 and should remain visible until October 29.

The eastern US will have the best weather on Friday night for viewing the shower with a large dome of high pressure promoting clear skies across the region, AccuWeather reports. Its absence provides darker skies to enjoy the show.

For the best show, find a safe, dark place away from city lights.

Stargazers may have to wait as many as 10 minutes between shooting stars (patience will serve you well this weekend).