How To Livestream The Perseid Meteor Shower On Tuesday

Dan Little | BDN

Around 2am local time is usually a sweet spot for meteor hunting but this year's shower comes with a catch.

The Perseids meteor shower is expected to bring around 100 meteors per hour.

The Perseids, which appear to radiate from the constellation Perseus, are debris left behind by the comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle.

NASA calls it "one of the best meteor showers of the year", and it is set to peak tonight.

The shower is expected to produce just 15-20 meteors per hour, far fewer than the 80 per hour during the peak previous year.

According to astronomy blogger Dave Samuhel, the best time to view the meteor shower would be the nights prior to its peak at around midnight. According to NASA's page, the "Perseids are rich in bright meteors and fireballs", and despite the full Moon it is worth watching these. But tonight (August 12) marks the shower's so-called peak - a night of intense activity when hundreds of shooting stars light up the night.

In a welcome development, meanwhile, the weather looks like it might lend itself to ideal conditions for stargazing, with skies set to clear on Monday night following showers in the evening.

Under flawless viewing conditions, up to 100 Perseids can shoot across the sky. NASA said the best viewing times are between 2 a.m. Tuesday local time and dawn.

This year, however, U.S. space agency NASA said between 15 and 20 meteors will be visible. The best place to see them is a wide open field as far from city lights as you can get.

For those who can't make it outside, NASA is running a live camera feed from Alabama starting around 6pm PT on August 12 as is the Virtual Telescope Project in Europe from 3pm PT.

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