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Annual Perseid Meteor Shower Expected to Double Normal Rate to 150-200 Shooting Stars Per Hour

Jul 26, 2016 06:02 AM EDT
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Sky watchers are in for a treat as this year's Perseid meteor shower is  a rate of about 150 to 200 shooting stars per hour.

 

The annual Perseid meteor shower is part of the celestial extravaganza that started happening mid-July with the Delta Aquarid meteor shower. The shower of shooting fireballs occurs yearly but according to the American Meteor Society, this year's shower will be more special. The shower will be most visible on mid of Augusts and is expected to yield double the rate of meteors as per its usual at about 150 to 200 shooting stars per hour.

Based on records, the normal rate of the Perseid meteor shower is 50 to 75 meteors per hour but this year, expect to witness double that rate. According to NASA, it will be the first time the phenomena will happen again since 2009.

The peak of the meteor shower will be on Aug. 12 and Aug. 13, also according to experts, a darker sky will coincide with the meteor shower allowing a more favorable sky watching experience. But to be able to watch the show unobstructed, be wary of city lights, according to a report.

The annual Perseid meteor shower is one of the popular showers in the world. ScienceAlert explained that the meteor showers occur when a comets' end swings very close to the Sun where the heat boils the icy surface resulting in the particles of ice and dust to dart in space. The particles form behind the comet on its tail and the Earth crosses the orbit of the comet and pass through the tail where the shower can be seen.

When debris impacts the Earth's atmosphere they burn up in the sky, and that's where the name "shooting stars" came from.

The comet producing the Perseid meteor shower is called Swift-Tuttle discovered by astronomers in 1862, according to Space.Com. And although the comet does not pose a risk towards the Earth, it is said to be a big as the one that impacted the Earth millions of years ago that killed the dinosaurs.

 

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