There are many sights seen in the night sky; some are steady and reliable, some are strange and fleeting. One of these are meteors. Often referred to as shooting stars, they are small, rocky objects caught in Earth’s gravity that plunge through the atmosphere as fiery streaks.

Meteors are what we see flying through the atmosphere. In space they are called meteoroids and they are called meteorites after they fall to Earth. Most are faint and often hard to see in our light-polluted skies and are the size of a grain of sand. Large ones are called fireballs or bolides.

Find a dark place, let your eyes adjust to the dark and watch an area of the sky. You will be rewarded with between two and 10 meteors per hour, even when there are no meteor showers active.

Join us at the Insperity Observatory on the first Friday each month for public night:

Aaron Clevenson
Author: Aaron ClevensonEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
I am the observatory director at the Insperity Observatory in Humble ISD. I am also an adjunct astronomy professor at Lone Star College-Montgomery where I teach solar system astronomy and stars and galaxies astronomy. I am the author of the astronomy textbook, “Astronomy for Mere Mortals.” I am a past president of the North Houston Astronomy Club, and was the chair of Astronomy Day in Southeast Texas in 2015 and 2016. He is an observing program director with The Astronomical League, coordinates their Master Observer Progression Awards, and has authored six of their observing programs.

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