Cosmic fireworks: Meteor shower to light up weekend skies

Jamaine Punzalan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 20 2017 12:30 PM | Updated as of Apr 20 2017 01:18 PM

A meteor streaks across the sky in the early morning during the Perseid meteor shower in Ramon Crater near the town of Mitzpe Ramon, southern Israel, Thursday. Amir Cohen, Reuters

MANILA - Skywatchers will be rewarded with the Lyrids meteor shower this weekend, according to state weather bureau PAGASA.

The shower’s peak this year will be in April 22, Saturday until before dawn of April 23, Sunday, the PAGASA Space Sciences and Astronomy Section (SSAS) said.

Under optimal condition, the Lyrids generate a dozen meteors per hour with a brief maximum that lasts for less than a day, PAGASA-SSAS added.

"Although not numerous, Lyrids are bright and fast meteors," the division said.

Considered the oldest known meteor shower, the Lyrids have been observed for more that 2,600 years.

Chinese records show that "stars fell like rain" during the meteor shower of 687 BC.

The shower is formed by bits of debris left behind by the repeat passages through the inner solar system of comet Thatcher.

The celestial light show however has been weak recently, according to PAGASA-SSAS.

The Lyrid was named after the constellation Lyra.