Perseid Meteor Shower
The brightest meteor shower in the recorded human history is happening. It runs from mid-July to the end of August each year, but as we near the peak, which occurs on Aug. 12, the number of meteors per hour increases. On the peak night, you may see as many as 50 to 100 meteors per hour in a dark-sky location.so focus on “shooting stars.”
The best time to view the Perseids, and most other meteor showers, is when the sky is the darkest. Most astronomers suggest that depending on the Moon’s phase, the best time to view meteor showers is right before dawn or before the moon rises.
The Perseids can be seen in the Northern Hemisphere. Look between the radiant, which will be in the north-east part of the sky, and the zenith (the point in the sky directly above you).
While you can easily see a shooting star with the naked eye just looking straight up, the table below shows the exact direction of the Perseids from your location.
There’s no equipment needed for this celestial event. If possible, just find a dark place away from city lights, lie down and look up. The better your eyes are adapted to the dark, the better the chance you’ll have of catching faint meteors.
Most of us have heard about the Eclipse that is set to happen in our area on August 21. There are gatherings being set up to see this spectacular event in the skies. The countdown is for a total solar eclipse will arc across the continental United States for the first time in decades.
What is it?
A total solar eclipse is when the moon moves between the sun and Earth, lasting for up to about three hours from beginning to end, according to NASA. The lunar shadow will darken the sky, temperatures will drop and bright stars will appear at a time that is normally broad daylight.
Retired NASA astrophysicist and photographer Fred Espenak said the experience usually lasts for just a couple minutes, but it’s truly out of this world.
“It is unlike any other experience you’ve ever had,” Espenak, popularly known as Mr. Eclipse, told ABC News. “It’s a visceral experience; you feel it. The hair on your arms, on the back of your neck stand up. You get goosebumps.”
“You have to be there,” he added.
Espenak said a total solar eclipse can last as long as seven minutes. For the Aug. 21 eclipse, NASA anticipates the longest period when the moon obscures the sun’s entire surface from any given location along its path to last about two minutes and 40 seconds.