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Perseids Meteor Shower 2010 Illuminate Skies Tonight

Written By RINOABROOD on Thursday, August 12, 2010 | 8/12/2010

Perseids Meteor Shower 2010 Peaks August 11-13, 2010 - The strongest and most visible meteor shower for 2010, the Perseids Meteor Shower 2010 will be having its peak from August 11 to 13. There will be about 60 to even 100 meteors per hours seen over the northern horizon near the constellation Perseus.

The Perseids Meteor Shower 2010 is best viewed starting 2:00am of your local time until early morning. The strongest meteor shower will be from August 12 up to the early morning of August 13.

The Perseids Meteor shower event is also known as "The Tears of St. Lawrence." It is at about this time that the feast day of St. Laurent was celebrated. St. Laurentius, a Christian deacon, and believed to have been martyred by the Romans in 258 AD on an iron outdoor stove.

Astronomically, the Perseids Meteor shower are dust remains left behind by the comet Siwft-Turtle. It was discovered in 1862, and most recently in 1992. The Swift-Turtle comet returns every 130 years. The comet produces a debris along its orbit which is now known as the Perseids Meteor shower.

Here is a tip from Space.com on how to effectively watch the Perseids Meteor Shower 2010:

Aside from the predicted peak hours, Perseid meteor shower activity always increases sharply in the hours after midnight. We are then looking more nearly face-on into the direction of the Earth's motion as it orbits the sun, so the atmosphere above you scoops up meteors like the windshield of a car catching bugs. From around 2 a.m. until daybreak your local time, the Perseids promise to put on a good display, weather permitting.

Making a meteor count is as simple as lying in a lawn chair or on the ground and marking on a clipboard whenever a "shooting star" is seen. Watching for the Perseids consists of lying back, gazing up into the stars, and waiting. It is customary to watch the point halfway between the radiant (which will be rising in the northeast sky) and the zenith, though it's perfectly all right for your gaze to wander.

Counts should be made on several nights before and after the predicted maximum, so the behavior of the shower away from its peak can be determined. Usually, good numbers of meteors should be seen on the preceding and following nights as well. The shower is generally at one-quarter strength one or two nights before and after maximum.

A few Perseids can be seen as much as two weeks before and a week after the peak. The extreme limits, in fact, are said to extend from July 17 to Aug. 24, though an occasional one may be seen almost anytime during the month of August.

As a bonus every evening now through he heart of the Perseid meteor shower, three bright planets are tightly clustered just after sunset. Venus, Mars and Saturn are easy to spot in the southwestern sky as soon as darkness falls.

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