Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Eclipse and meteor shower this month

Get ready for 2013's first lunar eclipse. This year there are two upcoming solar eclipses and three lunar eclipses for the year 2013.

Meteor shower, partial lunar eclipse visible this April
A meteor shower and a partial lunar eclipse will highlight the treats for stargazers this April, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Wednesday. PAGASA OIC Vicente Malano said the Lyrids meteor shower will peak on April 22, and a partial lunar eclipse will be visible in the Philippines on April 26. He said the umbral eclipse magnitude will be 1.47 percent and will also be visible primarily in Australia, most of Asia, Africa, Europe and Antarctica. "The shower typically generates a dozen meteors per hour under optimal conditions with a brief maximum that lasts for less than a day," Malano said. "The Lyrids meteor shower has been observed for more than 2,600 years. Chinese records show that 'stars fell like rain' during the meteor shower of 687 B.C. However, in recent times, the Lyrids have generally been weak," he noted. An article on EarthSky.org recommended that the "hour before dawn is best" to view the shower.

Here is NASA's graphic as to how much of the moon will be covered and where on earth you can see it:

Meanwhile NASA tells us that the Lyrid meteor shower peaks this weekend
Lyrid Meteor Shower Peaks this Weekend
"An annual meteor shower is set to peak this weekend, but the showing likely won't be as strong as it has been in years past. The Lyrid meteor shower should give skywatchers in darkened parts of the world a decent show late Sunday night (April 21) and early Monday morning (April 22), but the glare from a nearly full moon will probably impede the view for many stargazers."

I'd still go out and look up if I were you.

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