Look Up! Perseid Meteor Shower Peaks This Weekend
Prepare to be amazed as the annual Perseid meteor shower graces the night sky from July 17 to August 24. This year, the peak performance is scheduled for the night of August 12 to August 13.
Already visible, the meteor count steadily rises, culminating in a spectacular display with the potential for up to 80 meteors per hour during the peak hours of midnight to 4 a.m., said Pavel Suchan, an expert from the Astronomical Institute of the CAS.
The Perseid meteor shower is often considered to be the best meteor shower of the year due to its high rates and pleasant late-summer temperatures.
Unlike last year’s shower coinciding with the full moon, this year’s moon will be a waning crescent, allowing even some of the fainter meteors to be seen.
Optimal viewing graces the night of August 12 into the morning of August 13, when meteor activity reaches its zenith. The absence of excessive lunar illumination enhances the viewing experience.
For the best vantage point, retreat to rural areas far from the city’s luminous embrace. Between midnight and 4 a.m., the sky is poised to dazzle with up to 80 meteors per hour, some leaving vivid trails in their wake.
Choose your observing spot wisely, favoring locations with minimal light pollution. A deck chair or snug sleeping bag provides a comfortable perch for this celestial spectacle. Leave binoculars behind; the meteors will be visible to the naked eye.
How to find the meteors
Perseid meteors appear to emanate from the constellation Perseus, which is how the shower gets its name. This group of stars depicting the hero from Greek mythology lies in the northern sky, near the distinctive “W” shape of Cassiopeia.
The shower’s “shooting stars” will be visible across a wide swath of the sky, however, and identifying the point where the meteors appear to originate, known as the radiant, only serves to tell you which shower you’re viewing. If you spot a fast-moving meteor that’s traveling away from the northeast, chances are, you’ve got a Perseid.
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