This week Earth will be passing through a debris field left behind by Halley's Comet, the Orionids. Bill Cooke of NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office says, "Flakes of comet dust hitting the atmosphere should give us dozens of meteors per hour. Since 2006, Orionids have been one of the showers of the year, with counts of 60 or more meteors per hour."
The Orionids are an annual event that occur in October, normally beginning around the 15th and ending around the 29th. Peak viewing will occur this year a few hours before sunrise, generally between 3am-6am, on Wednesday, the 21st. Viewing should be GREAT for many as clear skies will be the rule for most of the nation along and south of I-40 and east of I-35, the southeastern U.S. In addition, the moon phase is just returning from "
How to view
Viewing is simple, all you have to do is look up toward Orion and that is it. No telescope required. Where is Orion? Here is an image to provide you some reference. This is about 1:00 AM local time; so note, this is not during peak viewing hours and your will have to reacquaint yourself. The red line on the image represents the horizon. Under normal viewing, you will likely see 10 to 20 meteors per hour; however, the last few years have been a bit more than that and it is possible this year will be the same. Happy viewing!
(Image from meteorshoweronline.com; additional information used for this post obtained from NASA Marshall Space Flight Center)