Annual meteor shower to peak this weekend

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More meteor showers are coming up - including the Orionids, which will peak in late October.

This meteor shower and others can be seen in a time lapse from space in an interactive map provided with data from NASA Ames Researcher Peter Jenniskens.

Remember it takes your eyes about 30 minutes to fully adjust to the dark, and don't worry about acquiring any fancy equipment - you'll be able to see everything easily with the naked eye, especially if you can get out of the city and away from the smog and light pollution. The Perseid meteor shower is one of the best to view in 2018, and it returns each summer.

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According to the U.S. space agency, the Perseids are well known for their speed and brightness.

In full flow, the spectacular display could produce up to 70 "shooting stars" an hour.

And while they take his name, the meteors don't actually come from the stars in the Perseus constellation, which are hundreds of light-years away. It is important to note that the constellation for which a meteor shower is named is not the source of the meteors, it is simply in the same direction. That's when the peak will start to build as Earth drifts through the most dense part of a cloud of cosmic debris left behind by Comet Swift-Tuttle, which passes by our planet and the sun once every 133 years. But "Earthgrazer" meteors, which skim Earth's atmosphere and showcase long, blazing tails, are visible earlier when the radiant is low above the horizon. "You can look anywhere you want to-even directly overhead", explained Jones.

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By Monday morning, that boundary should have cleared and it looks like viewing conditions will be good for just about all of New England. Every August the Earth ploughs through the orbit of this comet sweeping up this dust at a closing speed of over 100,000 miles per hour and the tiny particles vaporise instantly from friction with the upper atmosphere.

The meteor shower will reach its peak on the nights of August 11 and 12, and the show will get underway around midnight local time.

"Relax, be patient, and let your eyes adapt to the darkness", J. Kelly Beatty, senior editor of Sky & Telescope magazine, said in a statement.

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Ali bin Amer Al Shibani, Head of the Omani Astronomical Society said that the date of the meteors can be forecasted and that meteors may last for hours, days or weeks.

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