Popular meteor shower expected to peak this weekend

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(SPACE.COM) – The summer’s most popular meteor shower is expected to peak this weekend. 

The Perseid meteor shower is anticipated to peak the evenings of Aug. 11-12 and Aug. 12-13. During this spectacle there is estimated to be around 60 to 70 meteors an hour. Meteors appear to radiate out from the constellation Perseus in the northern sky, which is how the meteor shower got its name.

Skywatchers checking out the Perseids should also be able to see Mars (visible until about 4 a.m. local time) and Saturn (visible until about 2 a.m. local time).

This year the meteor shower lands on a new moon, meaning that the moonlight won’t impede on the night sky display. Light pollution interferes with viewing the night sky at its fullest. In order to have the best possible views of the meteor shower, go somewhere dark where much of the sky is visible.

While the moon is favorable for the Perseids this year, the weather could hinder the Concho Valley’s chances to catch a glimpse. Showers and thunderstorms are in the forecast for both Saturday and Sunday evening. Broken to overcast cloud cover is expected throughout the Concho Valley and will likely obstruct the night sky. However cloud cover might decrease the night of Aug. 12-13, so residents have a chance to watch the stellar event.

The next meteor shower, known as the Orionid meteor shower, is set to peak the night of Oct. 21-22. The Orionids produce around 15 to 20 meteors an hour.

Information courtesy of Space.com

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