Rare-early evening Draconid meteor shower peaks Friday night


TOPSHOT – View of a shooting star (Draconid) and northern light near Skekarsbo at the Farnebofjardens national park 150 kilometers north of Stockholm, late on October 8, 2011. AFP PHOTO SCANPIX P-M Heden ** SWEDEN OUT ** (Photo by – / SCANPIX SWEDEN / AFP) (Photo by -/SCANPIX SWEDEN/AFP via Getty Images)

ST. LOUIS– Stargazers are in for a treat tomorrow night as the Draconid meteor shower will peak Friday evening across the Northern Hemisphere.

The St. Louis area is anticipating clear skies for tomorrow night. You can find the cloud cover for a different region on the 7-day Cloud Cover Forecast.

EarthSky reports that unlike many meteor showers, the Draconids are short-lived. October 8 is the peak but you may be able to catch some meteors on the days surrounding Friday.

EarthSky suggests use the Big Dipper to star-hop to the star Polaris. Polaris marks the end star in the handle of the Little Dipper. 

NASA says the Draconid meteors are caused when Earth collides with bits of debris shed by periodic comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner (and that’s why this shower used to be called the Giacobinids). 

The Draconid does not usually produce a rich meteor shower. EarthSky says you can expect about 5 to 10 meteors per hour.

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