HOUSTON (CW39) – The Lyrid meteor shower is active each year from the middle to the end of April. This is after a lull in meteor activity since January.
Early this morning marked the peak for this year’s meteor shower, but you have another chance to see them tonight! The best time to see them at any location will be from midnight to dawn. This event produces about 10-15 meteors per hour.
History of Lyrid meteor shower
Throughout history, the Lyrid meteor shower has also been recorded to have outburst where nearly 100 meteors crossed the night sky within an hour’s time. The moon will be waxing tonight, meaning it is on the cycle of getting brighter. This isn’t ideal for viewing conditions, one would want a new moon for a darker sky. To get a better view of the sky, a for a better chance at seeing some meteor action, try stepping out of the city lights. Light pollution will inhibit your view of the stars.
TIP: If you have trouble remembering the difference in waxing and waning moons, think of ‘WAXing’ as ‘MAXing’.
These meteors are thought to be traced back from the star Vega. Vega’s constellation, Lyra, is where the name Lyrid originates.
Don’t get bummed out if you do not encounter meteors tonight. Think of it as a fishing trip, a good experience spent with lots of time waiting and no certainty if you will get a bite. If you do happen to see one, try looking for a meteor train! This is when there is a trail left behind, even seconds after the meteor has passed. This trail is made up of ionized gases.