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Nationwide Eta Aquarid "Halley's Comet" Meteor Watch 2021
Night of 4/5 May


 

Astronomy is one of the few areas where amateurs can make a real contribution to science. You might think that you need to be an 'expert' to contribute data which will have real scientific value. This could not be further from the truth.

This year Astronomy Ireland is to take part in a Nationwide Eta Aquarid Watch, where you simply count the number of meteors - or shooting stars - you see. No special equipment is needed, and you can look anywhere in the sky!

The Eta Aquarids are the result of Earth passing through a cloud of dust left behind Halley's Comet. As Earth moves through this cloud, the particles fall into our atmosphere and burn up, creating spectacular streaks of light in the sky, known as meteors or shooting stars.

To take part in the Nationwide Perseid Watch, simply go outside and look up! We want you to count meteors both nights May 4th and May 5th. Count how many meteors you see every 15 minutes (if possible, start on the hour or quarter past the hour), and note it down. Then email us your report with your name, location, and the night you observed. For example, a normal report would be as follows:

Name: Joe Bloggs
Location: Kinsale, Co. Cork
Night: Tuesday night and Wednesday morning

11:30 - 11:45: 12 meteors
11:45 - 00:00: 8 meteors
00:00 - 00:15: 17 meteors

Email your meteor report to magazine@astronomy.ie

You also do not need a telescope or any special equipment to view the Perseids.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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