Michigan: An Intense Meteor “Storm” Could Happen on May 31
In the early hours of Tuesday, May 31, we could possibly see one the most intense and historic meteor showers in our lifetime. The meteor shower would be intense that it would actually be called a meteor storm.
A meteor storm is much like a traditional meteor show, just with significantly more meteors flying overhead. A traditional meteor shower can usually produce 60 meteors per hour on average. An intense or unusual meteor shower is known as meteor outbursts and meteor storms, which produce at least 1,000 meteors an hour. Can you imagine?
According to Live Science, the Tau Herculids meteor shower may light up the skies over North America on May 30 and 31. However, I believe that our best chance of seeing this will be at around 1 am on Tuesday, May 31. At least, that's what a number of other sources have claimed.
The only reason we could possibly see this is because 27 years ago in 1995, a comet exploded. Well, all that space junk (space rocks) has been floating around in orbit for the past 27 years. If the earth's trajectory intercepts all that space junk, we could end up seeing all of it fall to the earth in the form of shooting stars.
It's also very possible that this meteor shower won't even happen, which will be a huge disappointment. Bill Cooke, who leads NASA's meteoroid environment office at Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama says if the debris from the comet is traveling slower than 220 mph, then nothing will make it to earth.
This is going to be an all or nothing event. If the debris from SW3 was traveling more than 220 miles per hour when it separated from the comet, we might see a nice meteor shower. If the debris had slower ejection speeds, then nothing will make it to Earth and there will be no meteors from this comet.
If it actually happens, it might end up being one of the coolest events we'll ever get to witness.