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Monday, Oct 25, 2021
Outlook.com

Nirmala Raghavan

The director, Nehru Planetarium, defends inaccuracies of the meteoroid predictions

Nirmala Raghavan
Nirmala Raghavan
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
Why did the much-expected fireworks turn into disappointing stray flashes?
The 'big burst' happened two hours earlier than predicted. At the peak of the storm, the Leo constellation was far below the horizon. We saw only the fag-end.

How is it that some saw many, others a few?
That's more to do with the lighting and weather conditions. Mind you, not all meteors are fireballs, some are very fine streaks of light which can be seen only on a clear night.

Why was the shower so magnificent in China and not in India?
They were in the line of sight of the Leo constellation when the peak occurred. The newspaper pictures of the meteors on the Great Wall of China are not meteors, but star-streaks. Meteors almost never travel parallel, as seen in the picture. They are scattered.

Do such predictions often go wrong?
There's always a margin of error in predictions. The peak could be a couple of hours early or late. The predictions made are based on guesses, such as the density of debris, which often may not be...
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