Annual Perseid meteor shower peaks tonight

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Citizen astonomers, night owls and early morning risers may want to make note that the annual Perseid meteor shower will be at peak viewing tonight, and to a lesser rate, tomorrow night.

According to the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute, the Perseids are predicted to reach a peak of 60 to 90 meteors per hour tonight.

The Perseid Meteor Shower is one of the more reliable showers, and lasts for several days on either side of its peak. Thus, the mornings of August 12 and 13 should be best for observing Perseids this year but a few Perseids can be spotted before or after these dates. We will have a very small waxing crescent moon in the early evening so there will be no moonlight to interfere with observations of the fainter meteors. The Perseids are best observed between about 11 p.m. and dawn from a clear, dark location with a good horizon.

Be sure to look towards the northeast.

If you're near Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, rangers will be hosting a viewing party at the remote Hensley Settlement this Friday night.



scienceguy28 said...

I hope that it clears up! It would be great to see this.

The Smoky Mountain Hiker said...

SG - According to the NWS, the forecast for Gatlinburg tonight is:

Scattered showers and thunderstorms, mainly before 2am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 71. Calm wind becoming south around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

About the same for tomorrow night as well.