Orionid meteor shower peaks next Thurs & Fri

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – Get ready for Halley’s Comet’s spectacular show, the Orionid meteor shower.

The Orionid meteor shower is expected to peak next Thursday and Friday, October 20 & 21st.

Halley’s Comet only flies by Earth once every 75 to 76 years.

But every year, pieces of Halley’s Comet come close enough to see every May and October in the Eta Aquarids and Orionid meteor showers, respectively.

NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke told space.com the Orionid meteor shower’s intensity varies from year to year.

This year, skywatchers can expect about 15 to 20 meteors per hour.

Keep in mind, though, in peak years they have exceeded rates of 70 to 80 per hour.

Regardless this show should not be missed though, because Cooke said “Orionid meteors are known for being some of the fastest and brightest, sprinting across the sky at a relative speed of about 148,000 mph.

If you want to check out the Orionid meteor shower, head out during the early morning hours. Cooke said the best viewing is just before dawn.

However moonlight could make the meteors a bit difficult to spot.

October’s full “supermoon” will rise just a few days before the meteor shower’s peak viewing times.

Categories: Chattanooga, Environment, Events, Hamilton County, Local News