Orionids meteor shower 2022: How to watch in Manchester, when they will be visible and weather forecast

Stargazers could be in for a treat this week as the Orionids meteor shower is due to light up the skies across the Manchester region.

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The annual Orionids meteor shower is here this week with stargazers and members of the general public alike potentially in for quite the treat. The skies across Manchester and the rest of the UK could be lit up with an array of shooting stars as the yearly space event takes place.

Usually seen in the month of October every year, the Orionids meteor shower occurs when Earth passes through the debris of Halley’s Comet. Although Halley’s Comet itself hasn’t been visible since 1986 - and is next expected to be seen in some 39 years’ time - a dazzling show of bright lights still originates from it.

The Orionids meteor shower is expected to peak between Friday, October 21, and Saturday, October 22, from midnight until dawn. It will, however, last for much longer than these two days with the cosmic fireworks set to shine until Monday, November 7 - just at a much-reduced rate.

Arriving just weeks after the Draconid meteor shower was watched across the north west of England, the Orionids is likely to bring around 20 shooting stars per hour at its peak. This is according to NASA Science, which also states the debris will zip through the atmosphere at around 41 miles per second.

The meteors won’t always be as frequent as this however, so it is important to know the ideal times and conditions to get the best shot of witnessing the event. Without further ado, here is everything you need to know about the Orionids meteor shower, including when it is, how to see it, and the weather forecast for Manchester.

How to see the Orionids meteor shower in Manchester

In order to have the best chance of seeing the Orionids meteor shower, it is essential to have a clear view of the stars in the night sky. The weather in Manchester will need to be clear, the sky will need to be dark, and the horizon will need to be unobstructed with minimal light pollution.

It is also important to have no direct light sources in your eyes, as that way your vision will adjust better to darkness, and the meteor shower will be easier to see. If all of these factors are in your favour, then you should be able to get a good view.

What is the Met Office weather forecast for Manchester?

Unfortunately for those eager to catch a glimpse, the weather in Manchester is likely to be largely unsuitable for meteor shower visibility, according to the Met Office. There may be a slight chance on Saturday night, but this is only if there is a break in the clouds. Here’s a full forecast:

Picture via Flickr by Mike LewinskiPicture via Flickr by Mike Lewinski
Picture via Flickr by Mike Lewinski

Friday, October 21

Showers continue throughout the day, in between sunny spells. These may be heavy with a risk of thunder. Fairly light southeasterly winds, though breezy at the coast and within showers. Maximum temperature 18°C.

Outlook for Saturday, October 22 to Monday, October 24

Perhaps less windy over the weekend than of late, though remaining unsettled and mild, with occasional showers or spells of rain through until Monday. Winds picking up again on Monday.