Veteran meteor researcher Paul Wiegert of the University of Western Ontario has been using a computer to model the trajectory of dust ejected by Comet ISON, and his findings suggest that an unusual meteor shower could be in the offing.
“For several days around January 12, 2014, Earth will pass through a stream of fine-grained debris from Comet ISON,” says Wiegert. “The resulting shower could have some interesting properties.
According to Wiegert’s computer models, the debris stream is populated with extremely tiny grains of dust, no more than a few microns wide, pushed toward Earth by the gentle radiation pressure of the sun. They will be hitting at a speed of 56 km/s or 125,000 mph. Because the particles are so small, Earth’s upper atmosphere will rapidly slow them to a stop.
Here’s an entertaining video from YouTube that shows some speculation of what may or may not occur in January 2014. It was uploaded on February 11, 2013. The video uploader uses NASA’s Eyes on the Solar System website to speculate what will happen with Comet ISON in January 2014.
January 8, 2014 was the initial date viewed and the time was set at around 5:57 p.m. There was additional speculation and information on what would happen on January 9, 2014. January 10, 2014, could be another interesting date showing what may or may not happen with Comet ISON’s tail and coma.
After using NASA’s Eyes on the Solar System website to recreate similar conditions, Comet ISON should be viewable in the night sky assuming it survives perihelion in November 2013. Attached is a screen shot of the website with Earth in front, and Comet ISON and its orbital path located in space in the top-right corner. As far as anything else happening it is still too early to determine.