When can you see the shooting stars?

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When to see the Leonids in November

As every year, the earth’s orbit crosses the Leonid meteor shower in November. With a bit of luck you will be able to see shooting stars in the night sky – surprises can even be expected this year.

What are the Leonids?

The Leonids are a meteor shower that can be observed every year in November – depending on the weather conditions.

The Leonids trace their origins to comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle, which scattered debris from its nucleus, which is just under four kilometers across, along its orbit. Its orbital period around the sun is 33 years. In recent years, there have been significantly higher fall rates. Sometimes 300 and more meteors per hour were counted. The Leonids are heading in the opposite direction to Earth, which is coming towards them. They penetrate the earth’s atmosphere at 70 kilometers per second, which corresponds to 252,000 kilometers per hour, and burn up. A fist-sized meteoroid creates a glaring ball of fire that shines brighter than the full moon.

When can the Leonids be seen in Germany?

In the second half of November, the Leonids meteor shower becomes active. Maximum activity is expected on November 17, when about 15 shooting stars per hour can be expected.

Are there any special features for the Leonids this year?

Yes. Meteorologists have calculated that in 1733 a large cloud of debris was split off from the main Leonid stream by solar wind and gravitational effects. The earth collides with this on November 18 in the early morning hours, possibly flaring up to 300 meteors every hour.

What are the moon phases in November?

The full moon phase was reached on November 8th at 12:02 p.m. in the constellation Aries. Since the moon crosses the earth’s orbital plane from south to north on the same day, it is hit by the earth’s shadow, a total occurs lunar eclipse. But before the moon enters the shadow of the earth, it sets in Germany. Thus, this cosmic shadow play escapes us in this country. Three days after the full moon, the waning moon meets the reddish one Mars in Taurus bordering on Gemini. New moon is reached three minutes before midnight on November 23rd.

What are the stars in November?

In the beginning darkness around 6 p.m. the summer constellations can still be seen. The Summer Triangle of Vega, Deneb, and Atair is high in the southern sky, while Hercules and the Northern Crown can be seen to the northwest. The gunner is holding his position to the south-west. Four hours later, at 10 p.m. standard observation time, the transition to the autumn sky is complete. Far to the south, the Autumn Quadrangle takes its place, known as Pegasus Square. The chain of stars of Andromeda joins the autumn square in the north-east, followed by Perseus with his winged shoes. To the south of Andromeda is the obtuse triangle of stars of Aries. In the east, the first winter constellations have risen with Taurus, Gemini and Orion.

(MBA/dpa)

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