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Leonids meteor shower

Date: 10 November 2021 Tags: Space


The Leonids meteor shower of this year has started. The shower will take place between November 6 and 30, peaking on November 17.



The peak time of the shower is witnessed when the Earth passes through the densest part of the debris.



  • The meteor showers originate from a comet known as 55P/Tempel-Tuttle in the constellation Leo. This comet takes 33 years to orbit the sun.

  • This meteor shower includes one of the fastest meteors, which typically travel at speeds of 71 km per second.

  • The rate of meteor shower is as low as 15 meteors per hour. Leonids are also dubbed as fireballs and earthgazer meteors. 

  • They are called fireballs as they have bright colours and earthgazers because they travel close to the horizon.

  • The bright light is generated as a result of the friction between the meteorite and the molecules present in the Earth’s atmosphere because of which it burns.


Meteor storm

  • The Leonid shower turns into a meteor storm every 33 years. During this time hundreds to thousands of meteors can be seen every hour. 

  • To be considered as a meteor storm, a shower needs to have at least 1,000 meteors per hour. The last such storm took place in2002.



  • The meteor showers can be viewed on any cloudless night when the brightness of the moon is not too high.

  • The location for viewing should be far from the cities and should not have light pollution. They are best viewed from secluded places.

  • The showers are visible by locating the Leo constellation in the sky. They are best seen during midnight and can be witnessed till day light.

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