Mark your calendar for these 2017 meteor showers

Published: Friday, April 21, 2017 @ 12:47 PM

Image from a dashcam video provided by Lisle Police Department in Lisle, Ill., shows a meteor as it streaked over Lake Michigan Feb. 6, 2017. The meteor lit up the sky across several states in the Midwest.  Contributed photo
Image from a dashcam video provided by Lisle Police Department in Lisle, Ill., shows a meteor as it streaked over Lake Michigan Feb. 6, 2017. The meteor lit up the sky across several states in the Midwest. Contributed photo

There are plenty of meteor showers to enjoy this year, reports Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Kirstie Zontini.

Mark your calendars and keep checking in for the latest forecast.

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  • Lyrids: Active April 16-25. Rates are usually 10-20 meteors per hour. The moon will be a waning crescent so the sky will be pretty dark. This meteor shower is associated with fireballs which are very bright. The shower peaks pre-dawn April 22.
  • Eta Aquariids: Active April 19 to May 26. Rates are usually 10-30 meteors per hour. The moon is a waxing gibbous so it will shine bright in the sky. The shower peaks before dawn May 7.
  • Alpha Capicornids: Active July 11 to August 10. Only produces about five meteors per hour but is known to produce fireballs. The shower peaks July 26-27.
  • Delta Aquariids: Active July 21 to August 23. This shower is best in the southern hemisphere. There is usually a good number meteors the week surrounding the peak which is July 30.
  • Perseids: Active July 13 to August 26. This is an active shower that produces 50-70 meteors per hour. The peak night is August 11-12. The moon will be near full and might be bright.
  • Southern Taurids: Active September 7 to November 19. It is long but doesn’t have an impressive peak. You could see an increased chance for fireball sightings. The shower peaks October 9-10.
  • Orionids: Active October 4 to November 14. A typical year it can produce 20-25 meteors per hour. The shower peaks October 21-22.
  • Northern Taurids: Active October 19 to December 10. Can be active the same time as the Southern Taurids. The shower peaks November 10-11.
  • Leonids: Active November 5-30. The rates are usually about 15 meteors per hours but there can be outbursts some years. The shower peaks November 17-18.
  • Geminids: Active December 4-16. This is a great meteor shower during the year. They can have long tails and bright colors. The showers will peak December 13-14.
  • Ursids: Active December 17-23. The shower usually produces five to 10 meteors per hour but an outburst can take the rate up to 25 meteors per hour. The shower peaks December 21-22.

Solar Eclipse 2017: Everything you need to know to view eclipse today

Published: Monday, August 21, 2017 @ 3:15 AM

A look at your Eclipse Day Forecast with Meteorologist Brett Collar

The 2017 Great American Eclipse is happening today.

The solar eclipse will begin shortly after 1 p.m. in the Miami Valley and will last nearly three hours. 

>> RELATED: What you need to know about the 2017 solar eclipse

Storm Center 7 Meteorologist McCall Vrydaghs will be doing a Facebook Live at 10 a.m. ahead of the eclipse on Dayton Daily News Facebook page. From 1 until 4 p.m., meteorologists will be live on the WHIO Facebook page from the Storm Center 7 studio and the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery.

WHIO Radio will have a special live show from 1 until 4 p.m. The special Eclipse show can be listened to live here.

>> WATCH: Here’s what the solar eclipse will look like in the Miami Valley

There are several events planned throughout the Miami Valley today, including over 10 watch parties.

>> RELATED: 11 solar eclipse watch parties in Dayton

Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Brett Collar said there is a slight chance for rain today with some cloud coverage, but there will still be the chance to see the eclipse this afternoon.

>> RELATED: Great American Eclipse: Will clouds or rain hamper eclipse viewing?

Some local schools are closing today out of concern for student safety, while other districts are making plans, as the eclipse will be happening around dismissal time.

>> RELATED: Some local schools close, others make plans for today’s solar eclipse

Since the Miami Valley won’t experience a total solar eclipse, there is a threat and concern that looking directly at the eclipse could cause retina damage to your eyes. If you don’t have a pair of certified eclipse glasses, there are other ways to view the eclipse, including a pinhole projector.

>> RELATED: How to watch the Great American Eclipse safely

>> RELATED: Solar Eclipse 2017: Read this before looking at the sun

Animals may be affected by the eclipse, and Director of the Montgomery County Animal Resource Center said it may not be a bad idea to bring pets inside.

Great American Eclipse: How to spot fake glasses, handheld viewers

Published: Friday, July 28, 2017 @ 11:04 PM

Meteorologist McCall Vrydaghs and Meteorologist Kirstie Zontini explain how to make a solar eclipse pinhole projector with items you have around the house.

The Great American Eclipse will be an amazing sight to see Aug. 21 when it crosses the country coast to coast — the first time since 1918.

MORE: #SkyWitness7

Locally the eclipse won’t be total, but 90 percent, according to the Storm Center 7 meteorologist team.

RELATED: Get ready for the eclipse

Viewing the total solar eclipse requires specific eclipse glasses or handheld solar viewers, not regular sunglasses.

It’s dangerous to look directly at the sun, especially during an eclipse without adequate eye protection.

WATCH: When will the solar eclipse be visible in your community?

"Even the tiniest sliver of a crescent sun peeking out from behind the moon emits enough light to scorch your eyes,” Ralph Chou, professor of optometry and vision science at the University of Waterloo in Canada told Space.com

Chou said about half of patients diagnosed with eclipse blindness regain full vision in six months. But the other half partially or never recover, he said.

RELATED: What you need to know about the Great American Eclipse

But how do you avoid getting scammed, and potentially blinded, by knockoff eclipse glasses targeting unsuspecting consumers? 

NASA gives advice on what to look for before buying eclipse viewing glasses and handheld solar viewers. Safe glasses, solar viewers must meet all the following criteria:

  • Certification information with a designated ISO 12312-2 international standard 
  • The manufacturer's name and address printed somewhere on the product 
  • Do not use if it’s older than three years or lenses have tears, scratches or wrinkles
  • Do not use homemade filters or regular sunglasses, even dark ones 

Leading up to the Great American Eclipse next month, the marketplace is being flooded by counterfeit glasses, which can falsely advertise they meet the international standard.

How do you know which manufacturers make safe eclipse glasses and solar viewers?

NASA and the American Astronomical Society said there severak manufacturers that meet the international standard to look directly at the sun.

Some include:

  • American Paper Optics
  • Baader Planetarium (AstroSolar Silver/Gold film only)
  • Rainbow Symphony
  • Thousand Oaks Optica
  • TSE 17 
  • For the full list, click here

Approved retail chains selling certified glasses are

  • Best Buy 
  • Bi-Mart 
  • Casey's General Store 
  • Hobby Town 
  • Kirklands 
  • Kroger 
  • Lowe's 
  • Maverik
  • 7-Eleven
  • Pilot/Flying J 
  • Walmart

NASA also recommends that whatever recommended safety device you use, give your eyes a few breaks and do not stare continuously at the sun. Keep your special glasses on throughout the eclipse.

NASA: Eclipse 101

Where can you find solar eclipse glasses or solar viewers?

You can purchase the glasses on the manufacturer’s websites or through online retailers. Or, you might be able to find a free pair from your local library. Check your library to find out availability. 

You can keep for solar eclipse glasses for the next eclipse event in 2024, as long as they haven’t been damaged.

YOU NEED THIS: WHIO Weather App

Back to school forecast: Hot and humid return for students

Published: Wednesday, August 16, 2017 @ 3:27 AM

Kettering and Centerville just two districts starting Wednesday. It will be hot and humid in the classroom!

Many districts across the Miami Valley are starting today. 

Kettering and Centerville are just two which will see a hot and humid return to the classroom, said Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Kirstie Zontini.
>> County-by-County weather

Temperatures will start in the mid to upper 60s with some spotty fog possible. Most will get into the 80s for the afternoon and with the humidity it will feel like the low 90s.

>> WHIO Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

There’s a small chance for a shower today as well.

Catch Daybreak LIVE through 7 a.m. for the latest look at the bus stop forecast, weather impacts and the latest run of Futurecast.

MUST-SEE: This might be the most striking weather video you see this month

Published: Friday, August 04, 2017 @ 12:31 PM

Night thunderstorm lightning rolling though southwest Ohio

First, you should notice that you can still see the moon.

That’s just one amazing part of this video of dancing lightning from Thursday night’s storms, shot in Clinton County.

Watch the video above for one of the best lightning visuals to come out of the area this summer.

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