How and where to see Perseid meteor shower in NJ this week

James Marshall
August 9, 2019

"There will be considerably more moon-free viewing time than at the Perseids' likely peak" from late Monday until dawn Tuesday, the website says.

As with all meteor showers, it's smart to carve out a chunk of time to kick back and watch the night sky.

Unfortunately this year luck would have it that right at the peak the moon will be in a very bright phase and all that light will make them harder to see.

Rest up if you plan to watch the Perseid meteor shower next week.

"Perseids are not only numerous, they are lovely". They're the result of a trail of space dust that a comet called 96P/Machholz leaves behind as it circles the Sun. "They are multicolored and many are bright". Every year, the Earth passes through this debris field, producing shooting stars as numerous as 20 per hour moving up to 25 miles per second at the shower's peak. As for your viewing window, you'll have about an hour of dark sky after 3 a.m. on August 11 and only a few minutes of pure darkness on the night of August 12. This extra brightness in the sky will lead to less than stellar viewing conditions this year.

Stargazers should opt to travel as far away from city lights as possible in order to avoid light pollution that will obscure the clarity of heavenly bodies.

For those across the southeastern United Stats, north-central United States and most of Canada, clouds are in the forecast that will obscure the sky most of the night. While the gas giant shows off its rings only through a small telescope, to the naked eye its distinct golden hue is striking.

Even though the peak is Monday, it might be better to try to catch a few meteors in the days leading up to peak. "There will still be plenty of meteors and you will not have to battle as much moonlight".

When can I see it?

The Perseids start kicking up in mid-July and stay active through most of August.

If the Earth's orbit intersects this debris orbit, a meteor shower results when these particles slam into the atmosphere at great speeds. The Perseid Meteor Shower isn't the only strong shower in the night sky during the year but is the only one to fall in the warmth of Northern Hemisphere summer. All of them coming from the constellation Perseus.

"Meteors can generally be seen all over the sky so don't worry about looking in any particular direction", NASA said.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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