A Small Window to see the Perseid's This Weekend

10 August, 2018, 15:26 | Author: Tara Reeves
  • Perseid meteor shower 2018

If you happen to miss Sunday night's peak display, the Perseids will still be visible - albeit at post-peak performance with fewer meteors per hour - through August 24th.

"It will be a crescent, which means it will set before the Perseid show gets underway after midnight", NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke told Space.com. The Perseids started in July 17 and will continue up to 24th August 2018.

With a new moon providing an extra-dark backdrop to the spectacle, the shooting stars will be brighter than ever. So most of the shower activity and thicker cloud cover should stay to our south and east.

After, all they come every year. As always, it's best to get away from light pollution and head far away from city centers.

When is the best time to see the meteor shower? If you happen to have trouble sleeping on Sunday night (August 12), that's a flawless time to step outside.

The comet whose tail creates the Perseus shower is called 109P/Swift-Tuttle, and is named after the US astronomers Lewis Swift and Horace Tuttle, who discovered it in 1862. Swift-Tuttle orbits the sun once every 133 years, but Earth still passes through the debris field it has left behind - its last visit to the inner solar system we all call home was in 1992. The comet is the largest object known to repeatedly careen by earth, with a nucleus of 16 miles wide. "Comets and asteroids leave tiny bits of themselves in the orbital path that they take around the sun".

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This weekend, Twarog is anticipating a slightly higher debris field.

Every summer, Earth ploughs through this thick trail (this year, it entered the trail on July 17, and it will exit on August 24), allowing some of the comet's ancient debris to enter and burn up in our planet's atmosphere. Unfortunately, there's always the chance that bad weather like fog or rain will create unfavorable viewing conditions. Read on for our guide to the shooting stars of the summer.

"They are basically rocks", he said. The radiant point of the shower, which is the spot where the meteors tend to originate, is in the constellation Perseus.

This weekend will be the best time to view the event with its maximum peak on Sunday night and Monday morning.

"It's just handsome", Twarog said.

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