Perseid Meteor Shower 2017: Aug. 11-12

Perseid Meteor Shower Radiant

Perseid Meteor Shower Radiant - August 12, 2017 2 AM. Credit: Stellarium / Bob Trembley

The Perseid meteor shower is a very popular annual event, with Perseid parties being held around the globe each year. Best seen from the northern hemisphere, the meteors will appear to radiate from a point in the constellation Perseus - between the "W" of the constellation Cassiopeia, and the bright star Capella (see image above).

Moon to the East of the 2017 Perseid Meteor Shower Radiant

The Moon will be east of the 2017 Perseid meteor shower radiant. Credit: Stellarium / Bob Trembley.

Every year I see posts about this year's shower being the "shower of the century" or it will be the "brightest shower in the recorded human history!" I'm not so sure about that this year... although the Perseids typically puts on a pretty good show at about 100 per hour, the waning gibbous Moon will be bright, and just to the east of the radiant; this will obscure many of the dimmer meteors.

Waxing Gibbous Moon - 79 Percent

Waning Gibbous Moon - 79 %. Credit: Stellarium

Peak: August 11-12
Active from: July 13th to August 26th
Radiant: 03:12 +57.6° (see image above)
Hourly Rate: 100
Velocity: 37 miles/sec (swift - 60km/sec)
Parent Object: 109P/Swift-Tuttle

Source: American Meteor Society

Meteor. Credit: Creative Commons, CC BY 3.0

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