We are going to be treated to quite a show thanks to the Perseid meteor shower, and it's going to be one of the brightest in a very long while.
The Perseid meteor shower is coming next weekend, and it’s going to be one of the brightest in years. While it won’t be the brightest meteor shower in human history, as many headlines trumpeted, it will be quite a spectacular show if you get a chance to witness it with higher than usual rates of meteors this time around.
This episode of the Perseids will features about 150 meteors per hour, but unfortunately, a bright moon will have an impact on the show, making it only possible to see the brightest Perseids. The peak time of the show will be on the nights of Aug. 11 and 12, when the moon will be about three quarters full.
Usually, the Perseids produce 80 to a few hundred meteors per hour, with the best performance being in 1993 when the peak rate hit 300 meteors per hour. Last year, it hit 200 meteors per hour.
“August’s Perseid meteor shower peaks for U.S. observers just after sunrise on Friday morning, August 12,” NASA said about the 2016 event on its website. “It should also put on a great show this year for observers in Europe, with some predictions showing an outburst of up to 150 or 200 meteors at the peak, according to NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke. U.S. observers will get a great view of the ramp up to the peak between moonset and sunrise on Friday morning, August 12.”