Meteors – commonly known as shooting stars or falling stars – are fragments of stone, nickel, and iron from space. While some may look like large fireballs, many are as small as a grain of sand. When they enter the earth’s atmosphere, they leave a trail across the sky.
If you’re in the right place at the right time, it is possible to see a meteor or two on any clear night, especially on dark moonless nights. On certain special nights, you may see meteors in far greater numbers. This is called a meteor shower.
August has long had a reputation for an abundance of meteors. The astronomical highlight of the summer is the Perseid Meteor Shower, which is the most famous of all meteor showers due to its dependability. It usually peaks from August 11-12 with about 60-100 meteors per hour.
2013 should be a good year to watch the Perseid Meteor Shower, since there will be an absence of moonlight due to a thin crescent moon. The meteors can be viewed from any place without city lights. The Perseids tend to strengthen in number as late night deepens into midnight. Meteors are typically best seen after midnight and into the early predawn hours.
Learn more about meteors, the Perseid Meteor Shower, and meteor observation tips at http://www.knowledgehouse.info/njfk/meteors.html
Watch a video of a Perseid Meteor Shower below: