COSMIC SHOW: This fireball from an earlier meteor shower is one of the largest ever recorded.
COSMIC SHOW: This fireball from an earlier meteor shower is one of the largest ever recorded. Wally Pacholka

Bundy could be showered in stars this weekend

YOU'VE heard of Halley's Comet but this weekend it's the remnants of Thatcher's Comet that will produce the Lyrid Meteor Shower.

Bundaberg region residents have already witnessed an array of astronomical events this year, including the super blue blood moon, and now a meteor shower is set to brighten the sky.

While this shower isn't as rare as three lunar phenomena occurring simultaneously - the first of its kind in 150 years - it's still worth keeping an eye out for.

Astronomer David Reneke said for those watching the Lyrids between one and two dozen meteors an hour may be seen.

The cosmic show is produced by dust particles left behind by comet C/1861 G1 Thatcher, which was discovered in 1861.

The shower runs annually from April 16-25, peaking on the night of the 21st and the morning of the 22nd this year.

Mr Reneke said there were about 12 meteor showers a year and this was the main event for April.

"Meteor watching is an early morning activity, the best time is between 1am and 4am," he said.

"The main thing to have is patience, this is the best shower in April.

So rug up and grab a cup of tea or coffee and look up at the sky - put at least an hour into it."

He said while meteor showers could be unpredictable and you couldn't guarantee a good show, when they're good, they're great.

The shower is centred near the bright star Vega, in the constellation Lyra, which appears low to the northern horizon.

Mr Reneke said the shower's hourly rate typically reaches 18 but there was an outburst in 1982 when the meteor rate peaked briefly at 90 meteors an hour.

For residents looking to snap a photo of the shower, Mr Reneke said to adopt the same techniques used to capture lightning.

"To photograph it you need a DSLR, a phone won't do it," he said.

"Leave the shutter open, have the camera on a tripod and wait until you see the flash of light."

For more information visit www.davidreneke.com



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