Published on 16 Nov 2012

Will we be able to see the Leonid meteor shower this weekend?

This weekend will see the annual peak of the Leonid meteor shower taking place, as the earth moves through a stream of particles from the Tempel-Tuttle comet.

The meteor shower is the result of tiny bits of material similar to the size of sand grains hitting earth’s atmosphere and burning up.

In the process of burning up, bursts of bright light are emitted which streak across the sky – something commonly referred to as shooting stars.

Each year, the Leonid meteor shower can deposit as much as 10-15 tons of dust particles over the whole planet.

However, if you’re hoping to spot them on Saturday night, you may have to be patient. This year, the Leonids are expected to occur at a frequency of around 10 per hour.

In comparison, the Perseids meteor shower tends to deliver 60 or more per hour during its peak each August, although this number can vary each year.

This year, the weather is looking favourable to see them across much of the UK, with clear skies expected. However, cloud may linger until a little after midnight for East Anglia and parts of south east England.

If you manage to capture the meteor shower on camera, I’d love to see your pictures. You can send them to me on Twitter – @liamdutton

Tweets by @liamdutton

2 reader comments

  1. Melissa says:

    Do you think I will be able to see them in the galloway forest in scotland, as it looks qiet cloudy in ayrshire? or is the clouds set to clear for later?

  2. Anna says:

    Will we be able to see it in Spain? Weather forecast is rain for the whole of Spain on Saturday.

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