YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The weather forecast into the weekend does feature clouds on and off, but there will be breaks to catch one of the great summer meteor showers.
This weekend will be the peak of the Perseid meteor shower.
What is the Perseid meteor shower?
The meteor shower takes place as the Earth sweeps through debris that was left in space from the comet Swift-Tuttle, which swept by the Earth back in 1992.
Pieces of rock and ice were left behind. The Earth pushing through this debris field results in meteors.
When will the Perseid meteor shower peak?
The Earth will sweep through the thickest part of the debris field this weekend.
The meteor shower will peak during the night of August 12 into the morning of August 13.
The peak is this weekend, but you will still be able to catch these meteors before, and after, the peak. The shower started July 14 and lasts through September 1.
Look to the sky after 10 p.m. and expect the peak to be in the hours before sunrise. The peak time is from 3:30 to 4:30 a.m. The shower will be visible through the night.
How many meteors will I be able to see?
This year is a good year to see a higher number of meteors out of the Perseid meteor shower as the moon will only be around 10% illuminated. This will help keep the sky darker to observe more meteors.
When the moonlight is low, the shower has produced numbers of 150 to 200 meteors per hour. That happened back in 2016.
This year, the shower is expected to produce up to 100 meteors per hour, if you can catch them through the clouds and the light is low enough in the sky where you are located.
This will be much better than last year as the moon was brighter in 2022 limiting the viewing.
How fast are meteors?
The meteors with the Perseid meteor shower are traveling very fast. They are moving close to 37 miles per second! That means they are traveling close to 133,000 miles per hour!
The meteors are not very big. In fact, many of them are as small as sand and marbles.