WESTPORT ASTRONOMICAL SOCIET PERSEID METEOR SHOWER
August 12, 2007 @ 12:00 am EDT
PERSEID METEOR SHOWER SUNDAY AUGUST 12TH, 9-11 PM AT THE ROLNICK OBSERVATORY, 182 BAYBERRY LANE, WESTPORT CT - (203) 227-0925
Got a calendar? Circle this date: Sunday, August 12th. Next to the circle write "all night" and "Meteors!" Attach the above to your refrigerator in plain view so you won't miss the 2007 Perseid meteor shower. Earth glides through the leftovers of comet Swift-Tuttle every year and this year is promising to be a great show. There will be a new moon and that means no moonlight and some very dark skies.
Tiny bits of comet dust will hit Earth's atmosphere traveling 132,000 mph. At that speed, even a smidgen of dust makes a vivid streak of light--a meteor--when it disintegrates. Because Swift-Tuttle's meteors fly out of the constellation Perseus, they are called "Perseids."
The show begins at 9:00pm on Sunday, August 12th at the Rolnick Observatory when Perseus rises in the northeast, weather permitting. This is the time to look for Perseid Earthgrazers--meteors that approach from the horizon and skim the atmosphere overhead like a stone skipping the surface of a pond. As the night unfolds, Perseus climbs higher and the meteor rate will increase many-fold. At its peak, expect to see 1 – 2 meteors per minute.
All you need to bring is yourself, a blanket or lawn chair and a tub of bug spray…