The Leonid meteor shower will peak this weekend. This shower is active every year from November 6 to 30 and the best viewing for Middle Tennessee and Southern Kentucky will be Saturday night into Sunday morning.
The Leonid meteor shower happens as our world crosses the orbital path of Comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle. In years past, this meteor shower has produced incredible meteor storms. Very active years for this meteor shower include 1966, 1999, and 2001. However, this year’s meteor shower will be tame in comparison. In fact, the next chance for a similar meteor storm won’t be until 2099.
Between 10 and 15 meteors per hour will be visible this year. The moon is still almost full, something that will have a negative impact on viewing. The best hours for viewing will be from midnight to just before dawn.
While this year’s shower will be hindered by the bright moon, a clear sky will allow for a clear view of any bright meteors. So find a dark spot tonight, look up, and stay warm!