Leonid Meteor Shower 2017 stream LIVE: Watch Leonids online | Science | News

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Every year Earth passes through the cosmic debris left in the wake of Comet Tempel-Tuttle, creating a breathtaking display of shooting stars.

The Leonids are some of the fastest to dash across the dark sky and will produce around 10 to 15 meteors an hour.

The shower will peek in the wee hours on Friday November 17 and Saturday November 18, with individual meteors appearing around those dates.

But if you are not ready to brave the cold outdoors then the good new is that you can watch the Leonids online.

How to watch the Leonid meteor shower online

The entire meteor shower will be streamed directly to your computer screens thanks to robotic telescope service Slooh pointed at .

The live stream hosted by astronomers Bob Berman and Helen Avery will kick off on Saturday at 12am GMT (Friday 7pm EST).

On top of the live stream, audiences will have a chance to send in live questions directly to Slooh’s experts.

Slooh said: “As Earth passes through Comet Tempel-Tuttle’s orbital path and encounters its debris, we will be treated to November’s Leonids meteor shower. 

“One comet’s trash becomes our planet’s treasure as the dust left by Tempel-Tuttle is transformed into a fiery meteor shower as it hits our atmosphere. 

“Although not the most dramatic meteor shower, we could see up to 20 meteors an hour at the Leonids’ peak. 

“Join the conversation with astronomer Bob Berman and Helen Avery.”

In order to steam the event at home or on your mobile devices you will need to sign up for a free Slooh account, which should only take you a couple of minutes.

You will find the Leonids live cast here.

What are the Leonid meteors?

The Leonids are pieces of cosmic dust and debris left in the orbital path of Comet Tempel-Tuttle.

When they enter Earth’s atmosphere at breakneck speeds, they burn up in the sky in spectacular displays of light and fire.

The meteors derive their name from the Leo the Lion constellation, where they appear to burst out from in the night sky.

Slooh said: “The Leonids have long provided fertile inspiration to creative minds. 

“Poet Robert Frost called them ‘fiery puffs of dust and pebbles / No doubt directed at our heads as rebels / In having taken artificial light / Against the ancient sovereignty of night’.

“For Walt Whitman they were ‘leaping, silent, white apparitions’ and he reported hearing Abraham Lincoln tell a moving story about the Leonids during the Civil War, using them as a metaphor for the state of the Union.”

Every 33-years-or so, the Leonids erupt into what is known as the Leonid Storm – when up to 1,000 of the magnificent shooting light up the night.

The next Leonid Storm is forecast to take place in November 2034.

Following an incredible storm in 1996, American space agency said that the meteor fell from the sky like rainfall. 

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