An annual space show is about upon us as we will be seeing two meteor showers over the next month. Technically they overlap, although the peaks of these showers are about two weeks apart.
First up is the Delta Aquarid meteor shower, which technically began about two weeks ago…and runs deep into August. The peak of this shower is expected to occur in the July 29-30 range. It’s not expected to be a spectacular show, but you may see ten to fifteen of these “shooting stars” streaking across the sky per hour. Outside of the peak, a few stray meteors are still expected. These meteors should appear from the southern sky.
Mid-August brings about the peak of the much larger Perseid meteor shower. The peak is expected to occur in the August 11-13 range, when some astronomers think that there could be anywhere from 50 to 80 of these streaking across the sky per hour. And you should be able to see then just about anywhere in the sky!
As with the Delta Aquarids, a few meteors from this shower are possible anytime about two weeks either side of the peak.
So if you look up in the sky over any clear night soon, you might just see a few shooting stars. You’ll see a few more starting the night of July 29…and perhaps a lot more by August 12!
The best way to view is to get away from any city lights, and get in a location where your view of the sky is not obstructed in any direction form buildings or trees. The best time to view is typically in the pre-dawn hours, although any time after dark should yield some meteors. And hope for good weather…clear skies do help.
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