Perseid meteor shower 2017:
everything you need to know
Thousands of people will watch the Perseids in August. Perhaps the most popular meteor shower of the year.
Made of tiny space debris from the comet Swift-Tuttle, the Perseids are named after the constellation Perseus as the shower seems to come in the sky in the same direction as the constellation Perseus. The meteors are pieces of the tail of the comet heating up as they enter Earth’s atmosphere with a whopping speed of 134,000 mph (210kmh) where they burn creating an amazing show of shooting stars.
When is the best the time to watch the Perseids shower?
The Perseids will appear in the night sky between July 17 and August 24 as Earth passes the path of Comet Swift-Tuttle. As many as 80 meteors an hour will burn through our sky. Last year this figure peaked at 150 to 200 an hour.
Save the date of the 12th of August, the shower will reach its peak when the Earth drifts through the densest and the dustiest part of Swift-Tuttle’s trail. This year it will be a little bit harder to see them due to the presence of the Moon, which will be three-quarters full so its light will make it less spectacular. You’ll see the most meteors in the shortest amount of time near that peak, but you can still catch some of them a couple of days before or after.
Where best to watch the Perseids showers?
Astronomers located in the Northern Hemisphere will have the best view of the night-time show. When going out to watch the shower, remember to stay away from urban light pollution in order to find complete darkness and hopefully the night will offer you a clear sky for the best visibility. Patience is the key to spotting the shooting stars, your eyes will take between 20 to 30 minutes to adjust to the darkness, so that after you will see better. It is important to remember that the meteors will fly in all directions but they will all burst from a single point in front of the Perseus constellation.
What do you need to see them?
The key to seeing a meteor shower is to have a dark and clear night sky away from the urban lights. Unlike some other cosmic events, you don’t need any special technology or equipment to watch the Perseids. You will need only good mood, a warm blanket, and romance around. And if you happen to be in the United Kingdom on the 12th of August we prepared a list of the best stargazing places in the UK.
Meteor shower watching is actually one of the best cosmic romantic ideas and it’s the stargazing date of the year. And don’t forget to name a star for your love.
Choose our name a star gifts
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