Celestial Diwali - Leonids Meteor Shower Peak on 17th & 20th Nov 2012
Away from city lights from 6th November 2012 to 30th November 2012 people can witness annual celestial spectacle of LEONID Meteor Showers (ulka patham in Telugu/उल्का स्नान) from pollution free dark clear skies.
Double Peak Activity - 17th & 20th Nov 2012: As per the International Meteor Organization (IMO) this meteor shower’s peak is expected at 3:00p.m IST on 17th November 2012 with maximum of up to 15 Meteors per hour.
Importantly quoting to Mikhail Maslov eminent astronomer IMO expects another Peak at 11.30a.m on 20th November 2012 (as earth will encounter dust trails of 1400 AD passage of the parent comet 55P/Tempel Tuttle) with 10 to 15 Meteors per Hour.
Where to Look/What to expect – Stars in forming pattern of Lion- the Leo: From 2.30 a.m. onwards observers have to look towards East Direction to observe fast moving bright streaks of light zipping across the skies. Telescopes/binoculars are not required to witness this celestial spectacle.
Pattern of Stars – Leo the Lion: One can see bright streaks of light zipping across the sky with naked eye and it would seem as if they are emanating near from star called Algieba in Leo constellation (pattern of Stars appearing/known since ages as Lion) where the radiant of this meteor shower lies.
Misconception – Superstitions : Whereas as understood from above the Leo constellation or its stars or Star Algieba have no role to play but particles of a comet in the event. It also wrong to entertain non-science concepts or treat this event as bad omen effecting people or country etc…