Tuesday morning will provide one of the year’s best opportunities to see some “shooting stars”, with the peak of the annual Perseid meteor display.
From a dark site, far from city lights, viewers should be able to catch around 60 meteors per hour at the peak. For observers at most locations, the peak will arrive in the early morning hours on Tuesday, local time, before dawn breaks.
Smaller numbers of meteors will be visible on Monday evening, since light from a nearly full Moon will wash out fainter meteors. The number of meteors visible will increase when the Moon sets at around 0130 local time on Tuesday for observers at mid-northern latitudes.
The meteors will appear all over the sky, so the best strategy is to lie down and stare at as large a patch of sky as possible – away from the Moon, if it is still up. Tracing the paths of the meteors backwards will lead to a point in the constellation Perseus, which gives the yearly display its name.