The Perseid Meteor Shower Puts on a Show This Weekend

An outburst of Perseid meteors lights up the sky in August 2009 in this time-lapse image

An outburst of Perseid meteors lights up the sky in August 2009 in this time-lapse image

The Backyard Astronomer Gary Boyle anticipates we will see as many as 100 "shooting stars" per hour.

This weekend we'll have a new moon, and moonless nights are great for viewing another nighttime phenomenon - the Perseid Meteor Shower.

What is the best way for you to watch this year?

Astronomers at U.S. space agency NASA advised the Perseids will be at their most intense around 2am local time on Monday morning.

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The August lunar cycle is now entering the darkened New Moon phase which should keep the starlit skies dark.

According to NASA and Space.com, Earth will pass through the thick of debris ar around 9 p.m. EST Sunday, meaning that night and into the morning hours of August 13, promise to produce the best show for North America.

Here is our guide to the must-see meteor showers of 2018 - including the spectacular Perseids shower which will peak this weekend - as well as where and how to see them. Nichols describes it as an annual phenomenon when earth runs into the trail of debris left by a comet.

Meteor showers are caused by dust breaking off of a comet.

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The shower will be visible to the naked eye.

Dr Helen Klus, Royal Astronomical Society, told Express.co.uk you might even be able to catch a glimpse of the meteors by peeking outside your window.

Find a dark location, far from light pollution, such as a park or designated dark-sky area. Because of this, meteor rates could be as high as 200 per hour. A few clouds will pass by Saturday night, otherwise skies should be mostly clear.

A number of planets will also be highly visible.

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There's no need to worry about meteors raining down on you, though, as Sky and Telescope says the bright streaks of the Perseids burning up are actually about 80 miles (128,748 meters) above your head and created by pieces of space debris about the size of a small pebble. But anytime after 10 p.m. on August 12 should be fine.

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