Meteor shower to light up Vietnamese skies this weekend

The Lyrid meteor shower comes from pieces of the comet Thatcher which was discovered and last seen in 1861. Image credit Babek Tafreshi via Getty Images  The Huffington Post

We are expected to have a gorgeous weekend, and you might want to cast your gaze skyward Saturday night for what is expected to be the final peak evening of the Lyrid Meteor Shower. Experts over at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory said people should look east toward a summer triangle of stars to catch the shower.

Although the meteors should be visible for most of the night, NASA says the best viewing time will be in the hours before dawn.

It's caused when Earth passes through a region of the solar system where there's lots of debris from a comet called C/186 Thatcher - which was discovered in 1861. What we see on Earth are particles from the C/1861 G1 Thatcher Comet coming in contact with Earth's atmosphere and subsequently burning up in the process.

On the night of April 5, 1861, an amateur astronomer named A. E. Thatcher was observing the skies in NY when he noticed an unusual object in the constellation of Draco. The moon will be entering its New Moon phase during the peak Lyrid dates.

Meteor showers are named after the constellation they appear to radiate from in the night sky, and the Lyrids are named after the constellation Lyra. The higher Vega is in the sky, the more Lyrids are likely to be seen. Keep in mind that it'll take your eyes about a half-hour to adjust to the darkness for optimum viewing.

"Simply find a dark, open sky away from artificial lights".

Carry a blanket or a comfortable chair with you as it can be a waiting game. Late April is also the season of the Lyrids, the second of the year's established meteor showers.

Check the weather before you leave.

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