The first beautiful meteor storm in 20 years will occur in May

Scientists say that by the end of May 2022, the first meteor storm in two decades could happen with the Tau Herculids meteor shower.

meteor storm

However, meteor storms are unpredictable events, so this cannot be certain. The Tau Herculids meteor shower appears at the end of May, up to thousands of meteors in an hour, which can be called a meteor shower (or storm).

Meteors occur when particles of dust or rock enter the Earth’s atmosphere and burn up, they are debris from a comet or space junk or dust. Depending on their size and speed, this process can produce a faint flash or a glowing ball of fire.

The parent comet of the Tau Herculids is Schwassmann-Wachmann 3

“If debris from the comet Schwassmann – Wachmann 3 (73P/Schwassmann–Wachmann) falls into the next event, we could see a beautiful meteor shower. If this debris had been slower, they would not have caught up with Earth’s speed in orbit, and there are no meteors from this comet,” said NASA expert Bill Cooke.

meteor storm
Image taken by Andrew Catsaitis of components B and C of Comet 73P/Schwassmann–Wachmann 3 as seen together on 31 May 2006

The Tau Herculid meteor shower is expected to be visible over North America at around 1:00 a.m. on May 31 (EDT) on the east coast (twilight 30 May on the west coast). South Americans in the same time zone will see fewer meteors. But it is quite certain that the Sun has already set when the meteor shower begins.

If NASA’s calculations are wrong by a few hours, people in Europe, Africa, Vietnam, and Australia can also observe. This sounds great!

meteor storm
Since 1930, the Tau Herculids meteor shower has been associated with the star Tau in the constellation Hercules.

21 years ago, the Leonids meteor storm in 2001 lasted a few hours. Meanwhile, the Tau Herculids meteor shower, if it occurs, will be much shorter, only about 15 minutes.

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