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Astronomy

Bright moon foils Lyrid meteor shower

By Dave Samuhel, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
4/22/2019, 6:51:57 PM

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The most active meteor shower in months is upon us. The Lyrids will continue at peak rates through Tuesday, but the moon will be very bright, limiting the number of visible meteors. The shower usually produces around 20 meters per hour with dark skies, but the moon will reduce this number to closer to 5 per hour. Check out this recent picture of the moon that will cause problems for the Lyrids.

The Lyrids will be the strongest shower since the Quadrantids of early January. According to the American Meteor Society, the Lyrids produce fireballs, but you will not see the long trails behind the meteors that are common to other showers like the Perseids.

The shower has a broad peak, so meteor viewing should still be decent Tuesday night. The moon will not rise until after midnight Tuesday night, so that will certainly help evening observations.

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The highest frequency of meteors will be after midnight, but the moon will be brightest during that time. So, my advice is just head out at any point while it's dark if you want to look for meteors. You can still see meteors despite the moon. Just avoid looking at the moon, or any other source of light. This includes phones! Leave the phone inside if you are serious about spotting some meteors.

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Viewing Conditions

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Good luck meteor hunting! Thanks for reading! Just look up; you never know what you will see.

The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of AccuWeather, Inc. or AccuWeather.com

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Astronomy