Every August, the Northern Hemisphere is treated to one of nature's most popular celestial events, the Perseid Meteor Shower.
The Perseidmeteor shower peaks this weekend and viewing conditions should be spectacular in mid-Missouri. Best of all, the slender waxing crescent moon will set at early evening, providing deliciously dark skies for this year's Perseid meteors. Lucky for Julian stargazers, this coincides with the annual Perseid meteor shower display at the darkest sky possible, improving the visibility of the meteors as they zoom through the sky's dome.
Meteors visible in Spain at a rate of three a minute on Sunday and Monday night!
While you might be able to see some flares wherever you are, your best bet for spotting meteors in Baton Rouge will be at the Highland Road Park Observatory this Sunday.
The Perseids are named after the constellation Perseus because that's where the point from which they appear to originate, called the radiant, is located.
This year the meteor shower is predicted to reach its peak on the night of August 12, as Earth passes through the densest part of the Comet 109/Swift-Tuttle's trail.
The bright streak of light in the photo was snapped when the meteor sped at speeds of 132,000 miles an hour. Meteor showers are a great opportunity for time-lapse videos and long-exposure photography, allowing your shots of the night sky to turn into van Gogh-like paintings of this starry spectacle.
This Perseid meteor shower will take place during a almost new moon-meaning it won't interfere with the show-and is expected to be the best meteor shower this year.
The Perseids meteor shower occurs around mid-August. To see this phenomenon, you don't need to be located at the top of a mountain, use a telescope or wear eye protection. As always, it's best to get away from light pollution and head far away from city centers.
Plus, it's good to give your eyes time to adjust; your peepers can take around 15 to 20 minutes to get used to the dark. Scientists from NASA also said that camping out in the country can triple the amount of visible meteors. Fewer but longer-tailed meteors are commonly seen skipping across the Earth's atmosphere when looking toward the southern sky.