What to see in the sky in November

The last month of autumn will treat skygazers to two astronomical events, namely a transit of Mercury across the Sun and the Leonids meteor shower.
The transit of mercury will take place on November 11. A small dark dot will move across the solar disk from 3:36 p.m. to 9:04 p.m. Moscow time. However, only the beginning of the show will be visible from the northern latitudes, where days are pretty short now. Thus, in Moscow, the Sun will hide behind the horizon at 4:32 p.m. The next transit of Mercury is expected to happen on November 13, 2032.

November is also the time of the Leonids meteor shower, which will peak overnight into November 18 at 2:00 a.m. Moscow time. Astronomers expect up to 15 meteors per hour, but the observation may be hampered by a waning Moon near the radiant.
The name of the meteor shower comes from the constellation Leo, where its radiant is located. The Leonids are the remains of a Halley-type comet 55P/Tempel—Tuttle. The comet has an orbital period of 33 years, and the meteor shower intensity increases after each revolution. Up to 10,000 meteors per hour were recorded in 1966.


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