BEVERLY HILLS—The annual Perseid meteor shower will peak at night on Wednesday, August 12 and transpire into the morning on Thursday, August 13. After midnight, as many as 100 shooting stars may be detected every hour in Beverly Hills.
“We have found that one meteor shower produces more fireballs than any other,” explains Bill Cooke from NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office. “It’s the Perseid meteor shower, which peaks on August 12th and 13th.”
The National Weather Service states that skies will be mostly foggy and cloudy. To get the best view, it is recommended to go near a higher elevation area such as the top of the Santa Monica Mountains where the skies will be clearer. Between midnight and sunrise are the best times to scan for the showers and detect fireballs.
Fireballs are the brightest of the meteors. Meteors are produced when Earth passes through debris left behind by comets as it is in the process of orbiting the sun. The Perseid meteor shower is the result of the debris of Comet Swift-Tuttle. According to Bill Cooke, the fireball will be as bright as the planets Jupiter or Venus and will be hitting the atmosphere at 132,000 mph. Since 2008, the Perseids produced more fireballs than any other annual meteor shower with Geminids as close second. He affirms that this meteor shower will peak right before sunrise when the constellation Perseus is high in the sky.
“Get away from city lights,” says Cooke. “While fireballs can be seen from urban areas, the much greater number of faint Perseids is visible only from the countryside.”
Aside from the peak times, the meteor shower will continue until August 24.