The Lyrid Meteor Shower Peaks This Weekend
With clear skies in the forecast, Mainers should be able to see a great meteor shower this weekend.
Lyrid Meteors have started to streak across the night sky. The April meteor shower will peak Sunday, April 22. Skywatchers will have to wake up early for this one, as the best viewing will be before dawn.
According to Space.com, this year you could see around 18 Lyrid meteors per-hour. In the past it has produced "outbursts" of 100 meteors per-hour. However those outbursts are hard to forecast, and only happen every 30 years or so.
For the best viewing find a dark location, away from light pollution.
Lyrid Meteors stem from Comet Thatcher. Every year, earth's orbit passes through the debris trail left by the comet. That debris burns up in our atmosphere creating "shooting stars." Comet Thatcher won't make another lap around the sun until the year 2276.
The forecast seems to cooperating with skywatchers. According to the National Weather Service in Caribou the Bangor area can expect mostly clear skies Sunday night.