11 incredible photos of this month's Perseid Meteor Shower

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"All of these meteor showers are the Earth passing through the debris left behind by a comet earlier", said Roy Gal, associate astronomer with the Institute of Astronomy at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

As the earth passes through the trail of the remains of a comet, the burning of meteorites in the atmosphere will result in the sparkling display in the night sky over Sweden.

The meteors are called Perseids because they seem to dart out of the constellation Perseus.


The Perseid meteor shower peaks this weekend and viewing conditions should be spectacular in mid-Missouri. Wherever you are this weekend, keep in mind to look up. This year the moon is only a crescent and sets before midnight making the sky even darker.

In many ways, Perseids is the most impressive meteor shower for the naked eyes. In that way, meteor showers are the most democratic cosmic phenomena. Sometimes such instances fire a spark in them to learn more about astronomy and the cosmos. But "Earthgrazer" meteors, which skim Earth's atmosphere and showcase long, blazing tails, are visible earlier when the radiant is low above the horizon.

To enjoy meteor phenomena, you do not need any equipment at all.


If one can pick a spot with lesser light pollution and look up when it is least cloudy, you are in for a celestial treat! If inclined so, reliable observations and statistics can be communicated to Belgium-based International Meteor Organizationfor better records of the meteor activity every year.

The author, Dr Aswin Sekhar, is an Indian astrophysicist working for University of Oslo, Norway.


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