Perseid meteor watch: Summer's prolific light show takes a hit

Perseid meteor shower peaks tonight

That doesn't mean there won't be Perseids, but the celestial light show won't be quite as wild as when it hit its peak of 300 meteors per hour.

According to NASA, visible meteor rates are down from over 60 per hour from last year's shower, to just 15-20 per hour because of the brightness of the moon.

If you're unwilling to set your alarm along with the courageous and bleary-eyed celestial enthusiasts, it should be possible to catch a glimpse of the Perseid meteor shower once darkness falls.

The shower is best seen with a wide field of vision, so leave the telescope and binoculars behind! So for the best look, lie back and watch the night sky, looking toward the north, and watch one of nature's greatest shows pass overhead.

Perseid meteors are fast and often colorful super bright balls of light.

The Perseids come from dust left by the comet Swift-Tuttle and are named because they appear to originate from the constellation Perseus in the sky.

This year, the shower peaks just a few days away from the full moon, whose brightness will make it harder to see some of the meteor flashes.

How does the Perseid meteor shower compare to other meteor showers?

The Perseid meteor shower captured on morning of August 14, 2018.

Stargazers are in for a treat on Monday and Tuesday, when the annual Perseid meteor will reach its peak. We see them as bright streaks across the night sky and name them shooting stars, intense streaks of light across the night sky.

How to watch the meteor shower in India?

The meteor shower is actually the result of debris shed by the comet Swift-Tuttle. But the Moon sets almost an hour earlier on August 12, providing a longer dark-sky window for meteor viewing. Bill Cooke of NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office said to Thrillist that on the night of August 12, we'll have a waxing gibbous moon. Before then, the moon will already be low in the early hours and the brighter meteors will cut through. It is the annual Perseids meteor shower.

NASA said it will also be broadcasting the Perseids live from a camera in Huntsville, Alabama, on the NASA Meteor Watch Facebook page starting at 8 p.m.

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