Skip to comments.Comet's Debris Promises Celestial Light-Show
Posted on 08/11/2002 11:35:09 AM PDT by blam
Comet's debris promises celestial light-show
Earth is about to plough through a thick cloud of comet dust giving sky watchers a celestial treat.
The Perseid meteor shower, which puts on a display at this time every year, is now approaching its maximum intensity.
It will peak tomorrow, sending shooting stars blazing trails across the sky at a rate which could reach two a minute.
This year's Perseid show should be a good one because there will be virtually no moon, and the meteor numbers are expected to be higher than usual.
The Perseids, which have mystified and terrified people for nearly 2,000 years, are so named because they appear to emerge from the eastern constellation of Perseus.
The meteors are small bits of debris shed by a huge six-mile-wide comet, Swift-Tuttle, that sails into our Solar System from a distant region of space beyond the planet Pluto every 135 years.
When the Perseid particles hit the top of the Earth's atmosphere at 135,000 mph they become glowing hot and appear as bright shooting stars criss-crossing the sky in all directions.
Most meteors produce bright white streaks, but sometimes they can burst like fireballs.
Robin Scagell, of the Society for Popular Astronomy, said: "The best time to watch will be from about 10pm onwards. The meteors will appear to come from the east, but can appear anywhere in the sky.
"There could also be random meteors as well, not connected with any particular shower, as there are plenty of these on August nights as well. You can be anywhere in the UK, but as always it's best to be away from street lights and in the country. Try to see as much of the sky as possible in order to have the best chance of seeing a shooting star."
Story filed: 14:25 Sunday 11th August 2002
No. (I scanned through World's In Collision some years ago)
Check for yourself: www.SpaceWeather.com
Does anyone know if the infamous Seventh Planet will be in the sky at the same time? If so, the conjunction of that planet with the meteor shower will be a powerful omen.
That's near the top limit of speed for incoming objects that are part of the solar system already. If the main object [6 miles] ever hits earth it could vaporize a significant part of a continent.
Uranus rises at 7:50 PM and sets at 6:17 AM. Uranus, in Capricorn, is in the eastern sky this evening. Uranus will spend 2002 oscillating along the border between Capricorn and Aquarius before moving totally into Aquarius in 2003. Uranus looks like a dim green star. Uranus is just on the borderline of visibility to the unaided eye. In practice, you'll need binoculars to see it.
What sort of omen did you have in mind?
Immanuel Velikovsky wrote Worlds In Collision, postulating his idea that the inner planets were not always in such regular and good-neighborly orbit.
Maybe I'll get to see the asteroid on the 18th though, fingers crossed.
I'm not sure. But there's an old saying: "Nothing good ever comes from the Seventh Planet."
No doubt it has great import with respect to the "Sacred Geometry" and it's associated "vibrational resonances" depicted in crop-circles. Be sure to alert the Perpetually Turgid One of this information....
I'm really afraid to ask about this...
You're dying to ask.