Perseid meteor shower set to peak this weekend

Perseid meteor shower set to peak this weekend

Perseid meteor shower set to peak this weekend

The most popular shower of the year is here, and we don't mean the familiar drizzle. Stargazers will be able to see the falling debris as "shooting stars". The display of meteors will light up the sky between August 11 and 13.

Because the moon reaches its new phase on August 11 - it will be just an early waxing crescent - and the shower's peak is in the early hours of August 13, the moonlight "shouldn't cause us any problems at all", said Chris Vessey, co-founder of Sidewalk Astronomers of Charlottetown.

This year's meteor viewing arrived with a good forecast.

The shower will be visible all over the United Kingdom, as long as the skies are clear.

The meteors themselves are traveling at 132,000 miles per hour, which creates their vivid streaks of light.


The meteors will appear to originate from the constellation Perseus which will be in the northeast sky.

The comet itself will come extremely close to Earth in a "near-miss" in 2126. The best viewing times are a few hours after twilight, up until dawn, on days surrounding the peak.

The Perseid meteor shower is an annual event. "The best instrument to use for any meteor shower is the unaided human eye, because you have the widest possible field of view". Smoke from the California wildfires that now covers parts of the western US may create hazy sky conditions capable of significantly dimming bright stars - and bright meteors.

Find a dark location, far from light pollution, such as a park or designated dark-sky area. Scientists from NASA also said that camping out in the country can triple the amount of visible meteors. If you're on the West Coast, be aware that, as AccuWeather points out, the wildfires may make the meteors harder to see. NASA will also be streaming a view of the sky from the NASA Meteor Watch Facebook Page.

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