Feeds

Meteor shower falls from Halley’s Comet on Saturday

Watchers checking for Moon explosions

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Professional and amateur astronomers will have their eyes on the skies this weekend, watching for the annual Orionids meteor show as our planet passes through the tail of Halley’s Comet.

The annual show lasts around a week and reaches its peak this weekend, when the Earth and Moon pass through the cone of debris left by Halley’s Comet as it takes its regular 76 year orbit around the solar system. Up to 50 meteors an hour could be visible, and will appear from close to the Orion constellation – which gives the shower its name.

Orionid meteor shower

Eyes up tonight for the annual Orionid meteor shower

"Although this isn't the biggest meteor shower of the year, it's definitely worth waking up for," blogged Bill Cooke of the NASA Meteoroid Environment Office. "The setting is dynamite."

The cone of debris is so large that both the Earth and the Moon will pass through it, and Cooke and his team will be focusing on the lunar impacts particularly. With no lunar atmosphere to ablate the debris, impacts will show up directly on the Moon’s surface, and Cooke’s team have been studying these to try and understand the formation of cometary tails.

"Since we began our monitoring program in 2005, our group has detected more than 250 lunar meteors," says Cooke. "Some explode with energies exceeding hundreds of pounds of TNT."

Sky watchers should also be aware that a two and a half ton satellite is also due to splash down over the weekend. The German ROSAT is expected to hit the atmosphere at around 28,000 kph and experts have guestimated that there is a one in 2,000 chance of someone getting hit by the debris. ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Fancy joining Reg hack on quid-a-day challenge?
Recruiting now for charity starvation diet
Red-faced LOHAN team 'fesses up in blown SPEARS fuse fiasco
Standing in the corner, big pointy 'D' hats
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
LOHAN's Punch and Judy show relaunches Thursday
Weather looking good for second pop at test flights
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
Curiosity finds not-very-Australian-shaped rock on Mars
File under 'messianic pastries' and move on, people
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
Top Secret US payload launched into space successfully
Clandestine NRO spacecraft sets off on its unknown mission
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.