Night of Shooting Stars: Meteor Shower Camelopardalid

Posted by on May 23, 2014 in Earth & Space, Sci-Tech with 0 Comments

Jessica Durando  |  USA TODAY Network

A first-of-its-kind meteor shower is expected to happen Friday night and into early Saturday morning. Here is what you need to know about the all-new shower:

The meteor shower will appear to radiate out from a point near the constellation Camelopardalis. NASA/JPL-Caltech

The meteor shower will appear to radiate out from a point near the constellation Camelopardalis. NASA/JPL-Caltech

1. What is the Camelopardalid meteor shower? It would be dust from a periodic comet called the 209P/LINEAR. The Earth has never run into the debris from this particular comet before.

MORE: New shower could turn into meteor storm

2. Why is it unique? Unlike other meteor showers expected to be visible around the same time of year, the Camelopardalid is uncommon because its debris is strongly influenced by Jupiter's gravity. No one has seen it before, but the May shower could rival the Perseid meteor shower in August.

3. When is the optimal time to view it? People in North America will get the best look, and peak activity will be from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. ET Saturday.

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