The Lyrids Meteor Shower Will Peak Over Chicago Saturday. Here’s When to Watch – NBC Chicago

 

If you don’t mind getting up in the middle of the night, you might be able to catch the Lyrids Meteor Shower sparkling across the Chicago sky early Saturday.

One of the oldest known meteor showers according to National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the annual springtime Lyrids shower began early Friday, but clouds were likely blocking the view over Chicago.

Clearer conditions will make it more visible early Saturday.

It will be best viewed “under very dark, very clear skies,” a blog on the Adler Planetarium site reads, with a peak of around 10 to 20 meteors per hour.

“This year the Lyrids are forecast to peak during the daylight hours of April 22; so the best times to watch for Lyrid meteors this year are most likely during the early-morning darkness on April 22, and again during the early-morning darkness of April 23,” the planetarium says.

What’s the Best Time to See the Lyrids Meteor Shower Over Chicago?

Experts said the best time to gaze at the iconic shower will be in the early morning darkness.

According to timeanddate.com, a website that documents and predicts how to watch celestial events across the world, shower visibility will be “excellent” late Friday and into Saturday.

Beginning around 9:03 p.m. Friday night, visibility will be “very good,” and then shift to “excellent” around 9:30 p.m. Visibility is expected to remain “excellent” until early Saturday, around 3:00 a.m.

On April 8, 2024, a total solar eclipse will be visible from the U.S. for the last time until 2045.

The planetarium suggests viewers should stray away from city lights and face east while looking up. Since showers can stretch across the sky, binoculars or telescopes are not needed.

According to the American Meteor Society, the meteors are “caused by streams of cosmic debris called meteoroids entering Earth’s atmosphere at extremely high speeds on parallel trajectories.”

The society noted that both the Lyrids, peaking this week, and the eta Aquariids, peaking May 4-5, showers are some of the most visible, should the time and moonlight conditions allow.

Where’s Best Place in Chicago to See the Lyrids Meteor Shower?

The two biggest tips from the Planetarium are easier said than done: Stay away from city lights, and look east.

“This meteor shower will be tougher to see here in Chicago, because you have to look east, and many suburbs are west of Chicago, meaning you’ll be looking right over the city – and all of its lights – to view the meteors,” Deanno says.

So what’s the best place to go to see the shower, without the distraction of the city lights?

Along the lakefront looking over Lake Michigan itself, Deanno says.

According to the American Meteor Society, the meteors are “caused by streams of cosmic debris called meteoroids entering Earth’s atmosphere at extremely high speeds on parallel trajectories.”

The society noted that both the Lyrids, peaking this week, and the eta Aquariids, peaking May 4-5, showers are some of the most visible, should the time and moonlight conditions allow.

.

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.