Perseids 2019: Best Places in America to Watch Meteor Shower

Perseids 2019: Best Places in America to Watch Meteor Shower

Sunday is just a few days away from the new moon on August 1, so skies will be especially dim that night, making for great viewing conditions for the meteor shower.

Be patient. Since the meteors aren't all coming or going in the same direction, you may have to scan the sky to see multiples.

The brightly shining moon will make it more hard to spot any meteors streaking across the night sky, but that doesn't mean 2019's Perseids are a total wash.

In the case of the Perseids, this debris originates from the comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle as it speeds path Earth in its orbit of the sun. Light blue colors mark spots with artificial brightness of up to 1 percent above the natural light. Northern Queensland will be a prime location for star gazers, as astronauts predict you will see more meteors the further north you are from Brisbane.

The Perseid meteor shower is active each year from around mid-July until the last week of August. There will be considerably more moon-free viewing time then than at the Perseids' likely peak from late evening August 12 until dawn August 13.

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The Perseid Meteor Shower is most visible at its peak on the nights of August 12 and 13. A rate of 150 meteors per hour, for instance, means two to three meteors per minute, including faint streaks along with bright, fireball-generating ones.

In all of my years of watching the Perseids, two especially bright showers still stand out: one in 1969 and another in 1974, both of which attained a head-turning magnitude of at least minus 10. When these pieces collide with our atmosphere at speeds of 37 miles (60 km) per second, friction with the atmosphere cooks them to white hot, so they produce an incandescent trail of ionized gas in their wake, creating the effect of a shooting star.

How to watch Perseids? . But we won't have to worry about Swift-Tuttle hitting Earth.

You don't have to leave the comfort of your computer to enjoy the Perseids. When this happens, the number and intensity of shooting stars zipping across the night skies will skyrocket.

One astronomical event dominates all others this week.