Falling stars can be seen without any visual aid. The peak of the meteor showers is expected around August 12th.
By the way, the August meteors are known as Laurenti’s tears. The name reminds us of Saint Lawrence who died martyred on August 10, 258 under the Roman Emperor Valerian. Since then, according to legend, fiery tears rained that day.
Night sleep and early wake up
When the skies are clear, many of these summer meteors can be seen in the night sky even on the nights before Max Perseid on Thursday, August 12. Night owls or early risers should be able to catch a glimpse of one of the summer’s fallen stars or the other when there are gaps in the clouds. According to ancient custom, some observers would then feel called to give the fallen star, which burns in seconds, a secret wish to take with him.
Dozens of meteors per hour
At the time of maximum Perseid, up to a hundred bright stars per hour could perfectly shine in the sky – but only under unusually good observational conditions. Inexperienced observers are unlikely to see so many meteors. The best time to observe during the maximum Perseid period in the second half of this week is between late evening and early morning.
Trail to the constellation Perseus
August meteors have long had a fixed date in the astronomical annual calendar for lovers of falling stars: Perseids are the only large meteor showers of summer and one of the most productive of all. The stars that fall in summer take their name from the constellation Perseus. There is the obvious starting point for Perseid meteorites, the so-called radians.
Smell the dust of the comet
However, in truth, the falling stars come from the immediate vicinity of the Earth: in its orbit around the Sun, our planet crosses a cloud of fine particles every year between mid-July and the end of August, which was comet 109P/Swift – leaving the shuttle behind in its orbit around our central star.
On the go at 216000
If the Earth hits the path of this comet’s cosmic dust, which returns about every 133 years, then comet dust particles, often the size of a pinhead, penetrate the Earth’s atmosphere at a speed of 60 kilometers per second – that is, an incredible speed of 216,000 kilometers per hour. At an altitude of 80 to one hundred kilometers, small dust particles then create a light phenomenon called a shooting star.
Like in severe snowstorms
An observer navigating through space with a swarm of meteors is presented in the same image as a motorist driving in shovels of thick snow: looking through the windshield, it seems as if all the snowflakes come from a common starting point. In truth, only perspective plays a trick—just as with the Perseids, whose traces of light can extend into the constellation of Perseus from the viewpoint of the Earth observer.
Larger meteors shine like bright stars and planets when they enter the atmosphere. The so-called fireballs are brighter, but they are also rare. These amazing meteors often leave a colorful glowing tail behind.
A good overall vision is important
Sky-gazers organizers do not need special equipment to monitor the Perseids – a deck chair or sleeping mat and good panoramic view is enough. Binoculars or even telescopes are a hindrance when tracking meteors that burn in seconds, because the field of view of such instruments is too small for agile sky cruisers.
Use wide angle and tripod
The best observation possibilities are offered by a place away from cities flooded with artificial light. If you want to photograph the meteor shower, you should use a wide angle lens, mount the camera on a tripod and choose a long exposure.
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