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Meteors to light up sky in stellar show

By Nilima Marshall

Stargazers are expecting to see a meteor shower peak this weekend, with dozens of shooting stars streaking across the sky as Earth passes through debris left by Halley's Comet.

The Orionid meteors appear every year, with showers producing around 20 meteors every hour.

Over the weekend the meteoroids from Halley's Comet will strike Earth's atmosphere at a speed of 148,000mph (238,000kph), burning up in streaking flashes of light that can be seen with the naked eye.

Tom Kerss, an astronomer at the Royal Observatory Greenwich, said: "The Orionids is a modest shower, producing around 20 meteors per hour at best under absolutely perfect conditions."

The shower is active throughout October, but Mr Kerss says the best time to see it will be on October 22 between midnight and dawn, when the sky is darkest and the shower will be at its brightest.

Belfast Telegraph

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