Perseid meteor shower: NASA captures Perseid fireballs
Perseid meteors have been filmed entering Earth’s atmosphere and streaking across the night skies. NASA’s All-Sky Fireball Network captured Perseid meteors hurtling overhead on the weekend.
The resulting video is a reminder to venture outside to witness the world-famous Perseid shower, which is expected to peak overnight tonight and tomorrow.
The Perseids annually occur as our planet ploughs through debris shed by Comet Swift-Tuttle.
The resulting meteors appear to originate from the constellation Perseus, hence the name.
The Perseids are famed for putting on a memorable show.
Stargazers under clear, dark skies can expect to see as many as 90 meteors per hour during the Perseids’ peak.
Unfortunately, this year is forecast up to be a little less spectacular.
The last-quarter Moon will hover low over the horizon in the predawn darkness during the peak, meaning many meteors may be lost in its glare.
However, you will be able to spot some Perseids in the coming days.
This will particularly be the case if skies are clear and you remain patient.
You don’t have to know where Perseus or any other constellations are.
Simply go outside, preferably after midnight, and look to the heavens.
Allow your eyes to adjust to the darkness, then simply wait for the faint fireballs to appear.
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The All-Sky Fireball Network is a system of 17 skywatching cameras around the country.
NASA uses this to track meteors frequently blazing more brightly than Venus in the sky.
NASA uses this information to better understand material firing past our planet.
How to live stream the 2020 Perseid meteor shower:
Another option available to stargazers who do not want to miss out on the Perseid shower’s peak is to watch the event live online.
Online telescope Slooh will broadcast the meteor shower on the night of August 12 and 13.
Please note, however, Slooh memberships are required to watch the live stream.
Slooh astrophysicist Dr Paige Godfrey said: “Some meteor showers produce great shows, others really test your patience while you lay on your front lawn in the middle of the night.
“But either way they remind us of the constant ebb and flow of the cosmos, as we get to witness the same spectacle year after year in the same parts of the sky.”
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