6 top tips for observing the Perseid meteor shower

Six ways to make the most of this summer's most exciting cosmic display


Credit: Mark Garlick

Look to the skies this weekend for a glimpse of the Perseid meteor shower

In August’s issue of Sky at Night Magazine, we take a look at one of the highlights of the summer observing season - the Perseid meteor shower. On 12 August, this incredible cosmic event will reach its peak and you won’t want to miss a moment of it. Here are six tips to ensure you make the most of this awe-inspiring spectacle.


1. Bring friends: Meteor showers are a great way to introduce others to astronomy and it’s much more rewarding to share this dramatic display with friends.


2. Lie back and relax: To get great views of the sky lie back and simply look up, From this angle you shouldn’t miss a thing. A sunlounger comes in really handy here.


3. Snacks: You might be observing for a good few hours. Some snacks and drinks will keep you ticking over till you turn in for the night.


4. Bring a red torch: this will help you maintain your night vision while you marvel at the meteors. It takes your eyes at least 30 minutes to get adapted to the dark.


5. Take notes: Keep a count of how many meteors you see every hour and contribute to some science as well by submitting your data to the British Astronomical Association, or the Society for Popular Astronomy.


6. Other nights: Although the show peaks on 12 August, you will still get heightened activity either side of that night so take advantage of any clear skies.


For more on the Perseid meteor shower, pick up a copy of our August issue, on sale now.





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