Active night skies

Astronomy blog

By Dave Samuhel, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
11/10/2017, 4:42:59 PM

Several important celestial events will occur over the next week. Two different meteor showers will reach a peak. Also, the conjunction of the two brightest planets will occur. Oh, and we will have the largest rocket launch on the East Coast in more than a year. Phew!

Let’s start with the big conjunction. Venus and Jupiter are the two brightest planets in the night sky. They will appear side-by-side just before dawn on November 13, but you will be able to see the pair close to each other over the next week or so.

You will have to look just before daybreak. In fact, the sky will start to brighten by the time the planets become clearly visible above the horizon. They both rise about an hour before the sun.

Meanwhile, meteor season continues. There are numerous meteor showers through the fall season. The northern Taurid meteor shower is active now. It has a very gradual peak, which will occur this weekend. This shower is most known for quality and not quantity. This shower features many fireballs, which are just very bright meteors. You can see this fireball-producing meteor shower through the entire month of November.

Next weekend, the Leonids peak. The peak night is also the night of the new moon (Nov. 17/18) The Leonids have a very storied history. The greatest…

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