Perseid meteor shower is set to light up the night’s sky next week with 100 meteors every hour
| Last updated
Get ready to look into the night's sky because there’s a Perseid meteor shower hitting Earth next week.
According to NASA, the Perseids are one of the most plentiful showers, and we’re expected to see up to 100 meteors an hour travelling at 59.5 km per second, or about 133,000 mph, between Saturday, August 12 and into the early hours of Sunday, August 13.
These fiery streaks will be in full swing between 10:30pm and 4:30am for your local time zone.
So, get those telescopes out, people!
The moon will be waning crescent during these hours and won’t be shining like her usual self to give you the full effect of this spectacular shower.
What's up in August 2023? ✨— NASA Marshall (@NASA_Marshall) August 2, 2023
Catch Saturn at its biggest and brightest for the year in mid-August. Wish on some "shooting stars" during the annual Perseid meteor shower on the 12th. And don't miss the "Super Blue Moon" on the 30th which only occurs about every 10 years. 🌕 pic.twitter.com/FZ5EUQsHkX
Bill Cooke, lead for NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office, told Business Insider: "Compared to last year when the moon was full, this year is going to be great.”
According to scientists, the best place to spot the Perseids will be the Pacific and Atlantic coasts of the United States, as per the UK's Royal Astronomical Society.
So if you’re in this region, you might want to pull up a sleeping bag and camp under the stars for a night.
And you’re in for a treat, as NASA declares that ‘100’ shooting stars is the maximum number visible during a Perseid meteor shower, as people typically view between 50 - 75 meteors per hour.
So, you’ll be getting the full premium service.
But these babies aren’t exactly ‘shooting stars’ but instead debris off a comet known as 109P or Comet Swift-Tuttle, which most recently hurled past Earth almost three decades ago.
While it was last seen in 1992, during the earth’s orbit around the sun every August, our little blue planet passes through remnants of Swift-Tuttle during its 133-year-old year-long orbit around our solar system.
The next significant meteor show is on the books for October; however, the Draconids won’t be as exciting as the Perseids.
So be sure you clear your calendar.
"If you're going to watch any meteor shower this year — because it's going to be the most comfortable and there are going to be lots of fireballs — that's the one to see,” Cooke said.
"Just lie back with your eyes, and take in the sky, and you'll see Perseids and zip along the sky," he added.