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The Perseid meteor shower 2017

Updated Friday, 11th August 2017
The Perseid meteor shower reaches its peak this year on the nights of 11th-13th August. Find out more about meteors, Perseus and what meteors have to do with ancient Egypt here...

Perseid meteor and Milky Way in 2009 The Perseid meteor shower usually peaks around August 11th-13th with the night of the 11th tending to be the best night to catch some lookalike 'shooting stars'. 

Despite rumours, it's not true that this will be the greatest meteor shower ever - NASA have issued a statement to damp down excitement:

This year, we are expecting enhanced rates of about 150 per hour or so, but the increased number will be cancelled out by the bright Moon, the light of which will wash out the fainter Perseids. A meteor every couple of minutes is good, and certainly worth going outside to look, but it is hardly the “brightest shower in human history.” The Leonid meteor storms of the late 1990’s and early 2000’s were much more spectacular, and had rates 10 times greater than the best Perseid display.

The Met Office suggest that there's a chance of cloud making the night less than memorable across much of the UK, but have a forecast of the best times to look up:

How do I watch the Perseids?

Channel 4's Liam Dutton explains all you need to know:

To mark the lighting up of the sky, we've collated a range of articles and a game on the meteor shower. Find out how you can find your own meteorites, discover where the name 'Perseids' comes from and learn about the relationship between meteorites and beads from ancient Egypt in the collection below. 

Test your knowledge on meteoroids with this game

Meet Perseus - the man who inspired the name 'Perseids' 

Discover how to find your own meteorite

What have meteors and iron got to do with Egyptian beads?



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