Saturday, April 20, 2013

Reminder Lyrid Meteor Shower Program

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I want to remind people that early Monday morning, there will be a program at Allens Pond Stone Barn to observe and hopefully photograph the Lyrid meteor shower.  Snacks and drinks will be available.  Bring a comfortable chair and dress warm.  If you are going to photograph the meteor shower, you will need:
steady tripod, wide-angle lens, shutter release and luck.  I will be at the stone barn by 2 AM to help people get their cameras set up with the right settings.  After dawn breaks, we can look at what you have captured on my computer and talk about post-processing.
To sign up, go to https://www.massaudubon.org/catalog/listing.php?program_code=270-AP13SP1 or just come and will sign you up at the Stone Barn

the reason for such an early morning program or "very late night" is explained in the following article from EarthSky News

"The 2013 Lyrid meteor shower is active each year from about April 16-25, and we’re now approaching the peak of this shower. The peak night for the Lyrid meteor shower will probably be the night of April 21-22 (late night April 21 to dawn April 22). This modest shower often offers no more than 10 to 20 meteors per hour at its peak, but it has been known to have bursts of activity that could dazzle you. In a bit of bad timing, the moon is waxing (increasing) in size as the April 2013 Lyrid shower heads for its peak date. You will likely see the most meteors if you work around the drenching moonlight of the waxing gibbous moon.

As a general rule, the most Lyrid meteors tend to fly in the wee hours before dawn. From most latitudes, the optimal viewing window for watching these meteors is from about 3 a.m. local daylight saving time until dawn’s first light. The moon will set a few hours before dawn throughout this weekend, leaving a dark sky for observing these fast-moving and sometimes surprisingly bright meteors."