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Solar System

Meteor Shower

small bodies, solar system, asteroids, night sky, certain time

Deeper web pages:

>  Meteor Showers and Their Origins

>  History of Meteor Shower Observation

>  Modern Study of Meteor Showers

Meteor Shower, certain time of the year when meteors fall in greater numbers than usual and seem to come from specific parts of the sky. Meteors are particles of space dust that enter the earth’s atmosphere and burn up, creating a streak of light in the night sky. Over 120 recognized meteor showers occur during the year. Humans have recorded observations of meteor showers for at least 3000 years. Within the last 50 years astronomers have begun to study meteor showers with photography, video, radio, and radar equipment. Observations of meteors and meteor showers provide important information about the distribution of matter in the solar system and the origins of comets, asteroids, and other small bodies in the solar system.

Contributors

Meisel, David D., B.S., M.S., Ph.D.

Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy, State University of New York at Genegeo. Executive Director, American Meteor Society, Ltd.



Article key phrases:

small bodies, solar system, asteroids, night sky, certain time, Humans, atmosphere, earth, important information, radio, photography, video

 
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