Happy Perseid Meteor Shower peak week!
On August 11, 12, and 13, the Perseid meteor shower will peak during the early dawn hours.
Meteor showers get their name from the constellation they appear to radiate from. The Perseids come from the debris of the comet Swift-Tuttle as Earth passes through its orbit. The meteors appear to radiate from the constellation Perseus. But you don’t need to find the constellation to see the meteors, you can look all over the sky!
The peak will occur during the predawn hours where up to 40-50 meteors per hour are possible. The moon will be waning during this time near 50% full. This will wash out some meteors. The morning of the 13th will have the least amount of washed out meteors from the moonlight.
To avoid the moonlight, you can search for meteors before the moon rises, which is after midnight. While watching the sky mid to late evening, the meteors will be traveling more slowly than during the predawn hours, and will be more colorful.
It is always best to avoid city lights when stargazing or meteor hunting. Try watching the Perseids with family or friends to have more eyes on the sky!
Thanks to EarthSky for help with this blog.