The Orionid meteor shower peaked on the morning of Sunday, Oct. 21 this year. The meteors come from bits of debris left behind by Halley’s Comet when it last visited Earth in 1986. When pieces of dust, rock and ice hit our atmosphere, they get burned up and create streaks of light in the sky.
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“Because comet Halley orbits the Sun in the opposite direction as the Earth, the Orionid meteors enter the atmosphere relatively fast. Thus, they are seen to ‘explode,’ or really fall apart, more often than other meteor showers,” Anita Cochran, a professor of astronomy at the University of Texas, tell us.
In case you missed the light show, we’ve rounded some great pictures snapped by skywatchers.
If you snapped any photos and would like to share them on Business Insider, send them to [email protected] with a name and location.
An Orionid fireball meteor from North Georgia College. The photo was taken at 12:29 a.m. EDT on Oct. 21, 2012.
This beautiful photo was taken by Stefan O'Dougherty around 4 a.m. A bright orionid can be seen at the top of this image, he points out.
KWQC-TV news anchor David Nelson tweeted this photo sent in by a viewer. It shows the Orionid meteor shower near Seaton, Illinois.
Instragram user Gunner Hoffman captured this stunning image after standing outside in the cold for two hours, he says.
Photographer Kevin Lewis saw 13 meteor trails during a three-hour period as he stared at the sky from North Whales.
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