It’s one of the year’s most magnificent meteor showers, but how clear will the night sky be for the peak of the Perseid Meteor Shower in Calgary?
In case you didn’t know, the Perseids can be seen from the northern hemisphere each year from late July to mid-August, according to the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).
The light show is set to peak on August 12 and 13, and up to 50 to 80 meteors per hour can be spotted streaking across the sky.
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The CSA says that the show typically peaks in the darkest hours after midnight, and suggests looking up at the sky between moonset and dawn to peep the most meteors.
Calgarians hoping for a good show are in luck: Environment Canada is calling for clear skies on both Thursday and Friday night.
Following sunny days, Thursday night is expected to be 11ºC, while Friday’s Perseids viewing conditions will see a high of 15ºC.
To fully enjoy the spectacle, the CSA suggests the following tips:
- If possible, head away from city lights, which make it hard to see fainter meteors. To increase your chances of seeing shooting stars, set out in search of dark skies in the countryside.
- If you need to use a flashlight, place a red filter over the bulb (a red balloon will do if you’re in a bind). White light is very blinding and may affect your night vision.
- Be patient. It might take a while before you see your first shooting star. Don’t be quick to give up – it’s worth the wait!
The Perseids is caused each summer by the Comet 109P/Swift–Tuttle as the Earth crosses the comet’s orbital path and passes through its trail of debris. That debris becomes meteors as it disintegrates in the atmosphere.
So keep your eyes on the sky this week, Calgary. It sounds like we’re in for a treat.
With files from Laine Mitchell