The Lyrid meteor shower is underway this week. The April Lyrids (LYR, IAU shower number 6) occur annually from April 16-25. This year, expect to see around 10-20 meteors an hour with little to no interference from the sliver of a moon.
The Lyrids have been named after the Lyra constellation because of its comet shower's radiant. The Lyrid meteor shower has the distinction of being among the oldest of known meteor showers.
"The best time for viewing and observing meteors is after midnight until dawn, while the best location is a dark location without light and environment pollutions", said a statement issued yesterday by Dr Mohammed Al Ansari and Dr Beshir Marzouk of the Qatar Calendar House.
The National Weather Service in State College reports that the night of April 21 - Friday night - is expected to be mostly cloudy with temperatures dropping to a chilly 36 degrees.
Bill Cooke, NASA meteor expert, told Space.com that patience is key to catching a glimpse of the shower. But really, a screen just isn't quite the same so you should definitely try to catch in-person, if for no other reason than to show the Moon who's boss.
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The Lyrids are a spring meteor shower made up of debris from Comet Thatcher falling (dramatically!) through our atmosphere.
For your best chance to see some of these meteors get away from city lights.
In addition to the standard bright meteors, you're going to want to be on the look out for exploding fireballs and the telltale trails of "meteor smoke" they leave behind. "This will allow you to see the fainter Lyrids, which will be more numerous than the bright ones".
The Lyrids appear to emerge from an area in the sky to right of the brilliant star Vega. For more information on the Lyrid meteor shower, visit the organization's website.