Peak activity for Southern Taurids meteor shower Thursday, Friday


Taurid meteorite fireball descending in a glowing aurora over Lake Simcoe on November 9, 2015.(Orchidpoet / Getty Images)

ST. LOUIS – As we enter the new moon (invisible) phase of the night sky, Missourians will be treated to a dazzling display of meteor activity.

The Southern Taurids shower is active from late September to early December. Its peak (Nov. 4 and Nov. 5) coincides with this new moon.

The shower is expected to produce up to five meteors per hour during this time.

“The Taurids (both branches) are rich in fireballs and are often responsible for an increased number of fireball reports from September through November,” the American Meteor Society writes.

The best time to see these meteors will be after midnight tonight and into the overnight hours on Friday, to the right of the star Aldebaran in the constellation Taurus.

Meanwhile, the Northern Taurids are active until the same time in early December, but its peak is Nov. 11 and Nov. 12.

Both Taurids showers are made up of debris from the comet 2P/Encke. We notice this on Earth as the planet passes through the meteor stream.

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