Astronomy lovers and anyone who loves spotting shooting stars in the night sky will be excited to know that two meteor showers are to take place this week. These are the Southern Delta Aquariids and Perseids, two of the most prominent showers of the year.
Meteor showers are small rocks or particles that upon entering the Earth’s atmosphere start to vaporize and create quickly disappearing streaks of light. The reason Perseids and Aquariids are so well known is that within an hour they end up producing numerous shooting stars.
These two showers get their name from emerging in the Delta Aquarii constellation which also produces a weaker second shower called the Northern Delta Aquariid. These showers usually start around the mid of July and can be observed throughout August.
According to the Royal Observatory in London, it is predicted that within an hour around 20 meteors will be visible when the shower peaks during the late-night hours of July 29. People living in the Southern Hemisphere will be lucky to have the best view of the shower as it illuminates the night sky.
Even though the two showers occur around the same time, the Perseid shower has been observed to be much more intense and high-speed as compared to the Aquariids. This shower gets its name from the Perseus constellation that it originates from. With a clear sky, dim moon, and minimal light pollution, the Perseid shower can produce around 100 meteors within a single hour.
This year on the night of 11th August leading up to the 12th, this shower has been predicted to be at its peak. As the shower’s radiant is just on top of the horizon in the UK, the British will most likely start seeing the meteors in the evening as soon as the sun goes down.
It was recommended by the Observatory to forget telescopes and binoculars as the naked eye is the best way to watch these splendid sights. To make eye vision even better and clearer, it is best not to use mobile phones or look at any other light sources for a while to allow the eyes to get used to the dark before the shower starts.