Shooting stars to light up night sky on 5-6 Mai
The largest meteor shower de 2022 so far is set to peak on Thursday and Friday, offering skygazers the best chance of the year to view shooting stars.
Jusqu'à 50 meteors an hour will be visible around the world, weather permitting, with the best views of the celestial spectacle occurring just before dawn.
The Eta Aquarids take place when the Earth passes through the tail of Halley’s Comet, which passes Earth every 76 années.
The ‘shooting stars’ that appear are when dust, stones and other debris from the comet’s tail burn up in the Earth’s atmosphere.
“Fast meteors can leave glowing ‘trains’ (incandescent bits of debris in the wake of the meteor) which last for several seconds to minutes,” Nasa explained on its website.
“Fast meteors can also sometimes become fireballs: Look for prolonged explosions of light.”
Weather conditions for viewing the Eta Aquarids will be largely favourable in the UK, according to forecasts from the Met Office, with clear skies across most parts. Northern Ireland and Scotland will experience some cloud.
The best view of the meteor shower will be seen in areas with low light pollution, far away from cities and other bright lights.
No specialist equipment is required to see them, though viewers are advised to allow up to 20 minutes to allow their eyes to adjust to the dark.
The sky will appear even darker than usual due to the timing of the Moon’s cycle, which is currently in a waxing crescent phase and only 15 per cent full.
The Aquarids appear to eminate fro the constellation Aquarius, which is easiest to see in the Southern Hemisphere.
Despite peaking on 5-6 Mai, the meteor shower will be visible from 15 April to 27 Mai.