Leonids are coming! The 2001 meteor shower could be a huge show with peak meteor rates of up to 1,400 per hour


Leonids are coming! The 2001 meteor shower could be a huge show with peak meteor rates of up to 1,400 per hour

The 2001 Leonids meteor shower - when Earth passes through debris streams from Comet Tempel-Tuttle - could be one of the biggest astronomical shows in years.

Experts at NASA'S Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., and the University of Western Ontario in London, predict rates of up to 1,400 meteors per hour.

Stargazers will see the most meteors near dawn EST on Sunday, Nov. 18 in the Eastern United States and around 3 a.m. PST in the Western United States.

Predicting the time and intensity of meteor showers is important for protecting expensive, satellites from meteors that travel at speeds of 45 miles per second (71 kilometers per second.)

Teams will monitor the storm from six locations, including Alabama, Florida, New Mexico, Hawaii, Guam and Mongolia - and provide near real-time updates at: SpaceWeather.com.

During the 1999 Leonids event, rates of 3,700 meteors per hour were recorded over Israel and in 2001 rates of almost 400 meteors per hour were recorded over parts of North America.

Talk to an expert about Leonids, its importance and the best way to see this year's "show."

Who:
Mitzi Adams
Astronomer
Marshall Space Flight Center

Interview Information:
Kathy Jordan-Pettus
(256) 830-6583 Ext. 101
Story Information:
Steve Roy, Media Relations
(256) 544-0034

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