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Gaze in Awe at Spectacular Fireballs: Southern Taurid Meteor Shower Peaks This Weekend

This weekend, Earth inhabitants are in for a special treat as the Southern Taurid meteor shower bursts its way across the night sky.

The annual Southern Taurid is a shower that can be seen in mid-November every year. Unlike other meteor showers, the Southern Taurid isn’t as famous as others because it is not as intense nor as dazzling. However, due to its low intensity, it does often produce distinctively bright fireballs.

The Southern Taurid meteor shower usually produces around five meteors an hour, however, this year things look especially promising. The American Meteor Society (AMS) has released predictions that suggest the peak of the shower, which is expected to be visible this weekend from about 7 to 10pm (local time) on both Saturday and Sunday nights, will yield significantly more activity.

The best time and place to view the Southern Taurid meteor shower is from a dark, open area with minimal obstruction from the moon and light pollution. This is because objects in the night sky will be hard to spot and their streaks across the night sky short lived. Consequently, the best views will be experienced away from bright city lights, and during those early hours of the morning as the moon is waning.

The Southern Taurid meteor shower is one of three separate showers associated with the comet Encke. This meteor swarm happens when the Earth passes through an extended cloud of debris left by successive passages of the comet.

Whether you manage to spot an extra-bright fireball or simply see five meteors light up the night sky, the Southern Taurid meteor shower is sure to delight and provide a moment of wonder during this beautiful night. So this weekend, make sure to lay your eyes on this delightful shower and take in the beauty of the natural night sky.

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