Journalist have talked breathlessly about the upcoming solar eclipse which will happen on August 21, but another fantastic astronomic event will happen this weekend.
The bright moonlight dampened the spirits of the around 200 stargazers who had gathered at the two vantage points of Jebel Shams and Jebel Akhdar on Saturday to witness the annual "Perseids Shower" that lights up the night sky.
This year the peak of the meteor shower fell in the night from 11 to 12 August, but experts claim that the night of the 13th of August will be no less spectacular. In 1833, another Leonid storm reportedly had a rate of at least tens of thousands meteors per hour. The moon turned full about a week ago and remains more than half full in the sky now, foiling attempts to view meteors.
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A meteor shower is in fact small chunk of a single, large comet falling into Earth's atmosphere. Perseids are debris from Comet Swift-Tuttle, which Earth passes through every August.
"You might be lucky or unlucky; that's the way with meteors", he said. In fact, the meteors which we see nearly certainly broke off from Swift-Tuttle during its 1862 visit and not the 1992 visit. After the moon is up, that number drops to about 20 to 30 meteors an hour. "You want to get away from bright lights of the city, so if you can go out into the countryside somewhere, maybe up north, where the sky is really dark, you'll be able to see shooting stars and more meteors".