Sky lights up at night as Perseid meteors visit Earth

Janie Parker
Августа 14, 2017

August is a big month for stargazers and astronomy fans, but this weekend's meteor shower may leave a little bit to be desired.

It's just mere hours until the Perseid meteor shower lights up the Saturday night sky. The Perseid meteor shower is better appreciated under a clear sky away from the major cities.

The Perseid meteors can be seen each year in July and August as Earth passes the stream of debris from the comet Swift-Tuttle.

"Last year's Perseids excelled with 200 meteors an hour".

The best way to enjoy this celestial event is to organize a camping trip, possibly with telescopes to see the light show better.

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When does the Perseid meteor shower peak? The Perseids refer to a regular occurrence of meteorites that appear to come from the Perseus constellation.

There will be fewer meteors this year, expectations are around 40 to 50 meteors per hour compared to the 90 we see on normal years. Peak viewing will be Friday night, early Saturday, Saturday night and early Sunday.

The Swift-Tuttle comet orbits the sun every 135 years but at nearly 90 degrees to the orbit of the Earth. You'll still be able to see meteors following moon rise but the number of "shooting stars" you spot won't likely be as high.

He said: "We can look forward to a decent display, even though they aren't going to be raining down from the sky".

But most of the meteors in the Perseids are much too small for that: they're about the size of a grain of sand.

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