Perseids Meteor Shower

Tonight after dark begins an amazing show of meteors.  We go through the trail of a comet that past many years ago.  The shower’s parent comet, 109P/Swift-Tuttle passed through our inner solar system back in the early 1990′s and will not  be back again until 2126.  It left a real good dust trail then with the particulate matter being about the size of a corn flake and with the same texture.  So none of this will make it to the surface.  It started on the 11th of this month and will last until the 13th.  So you have a chance to see it early Saturday morning.  The northern hemisphere gets the best show this time and streaks start to show up as soon as it gets dark and peaks an hour or two before dawn.  These meteors will be “shooting” from the Perseids radiant, so look in the direction of that constellation.

The Perseid Radiant

Look towards the North East

However you can see meteors in every direction

I’m not real big into astronomy and I was reminded of this today from B”man or I wouldn’t have even remembered.  However I do recall watching this in 2004 with the same type of moon we have now.  Which is just a sliver and rises in the NW before sunset and sets quickly around midnight.  So if you are out in the boon docks like me you should really see a show.  It is a quarter after midnight and I have already seen a dozen, mostly around ten.  SkyandTelescope is one of the best sites I have found for a redneck with two years of college to figure what is going on in the sky.  I just recently started following the moon phases to see if I could catch more bass during certain times of the months.  Which I am finding out wind direction and gradient pressure has more to do with bass hitting than anything.

With the recent “close” call we had with an asteroid and the lack of news of such a thing, I plan to at least try to get my star news from an independent source.  S & T works pretty well and I will keep the rest of  my redneck buddies up to date from what I can find from them.  Gotta go outside and look.  It will be three years before we have a moon in the first quarter during August when we pass through this trail every year.

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