From Wednesday (5), a meteor shower must hit Earth’s atmosphere. The phenomenon may be visible to the naked eye until Thursday (6), if the sky is low, around 2 AM.
Even if the sky conditions are good, some factors can get in the way. According to Anísio Lasievicz, director of Newton Freire Science Park, even the brightness of the moon can make the phenomenon difficult to visualize. “Eta Acuardas is composed of the debris of Comet Halley, and it will be visible on the eastern side. You only need to find the moon, which will be diminishing, so that the meteorites are to the left of it. At the same time as the moon helps determine the position, it can obstruct the luminosity.” The director reveals.
When it comes to meteor showers, the name of the phenomenon can be frightening. After all, the theory says that only one meteor was responsible for the decimation of the Earth’s dinosaur population. Eta Aquáridas is composed of meteors, and fragments of dust, which end up disintegrating upon entering Earth’s atmosphere. The ring got its name because it occurs near the star Eta Aquari, located in the constellation Aquarius.
When a meteor shines upon entering the atmosphere, the people call it a meteor star. “This happens at an altitude between 50 and 100 kilometers. A commercial plane, for example, reaches an average altitude of 12 km,” highlights Lasievicz.
Meteor showers are regular, occurring on average two to three times a month. “Some of them happen very weakly,” he asserts, “but because most people live in cities, light pollution makes it difficult to visualize these phenomena.”
More phenomena on May 26
May reveals two other astronomical rings. On the twenty-sixth day, the second giant moon of the year will illuminate the sky. It will be the beginning of the flower moon, a name associated with the month in which the phenomenon occurs and associated with spring in the northern hemisphere, the season of flowers.
On the same date, a total lunar eclipse must occur at dawn. “Unfortunately, what will not be visible here in Brazil. The eclipse will happen when the sun rises early in the morning. In Africa and Asia, this eclipse will be visible,” Lasjevic explains.