Perseids meteor shower peaks tonight

Last Updated: Monday, August 12, 2013 - 16:53

Zee Media Bureau/Liji Varghese

New Delhi: Sky gazers are in for a celestial treat as the annual Perseids meteor shower will make a splash in the night sky on Monday.

The meteor shower which started in mid-July will peak from the midnight of August 12 with an average of around 100 shooting stars per hour.

The peak activity will be from 11:45 pm IST on August 12 to 2:15 am IST on August 13. Even after its peak visibility, the meteor shower will continue till August 24.

The most famous of the meteor showers, Perseids is an annual phenomenon that occurs between mid-July and early August when the Earth passes through the remains of comet `Swift-Tuttle`, the greatest activity occurring in the second week of August.

The meteor shower is named Perseids because the point it appears to come from lies in the constellation `Perseus`. Astronomers have been observing this meteor shower for the last 2,000 years.

In early medieval Europe, the Perseids came to be known as "tears of St Lawrence". In 1839, Eduard Heis was the first observer to take a meteor count and discovered that Perseids had a maximum rate of around 160 per hour.

First Published: Monday, August 12, 2013 - 09:51

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