Meteor shower, Perseids, Meteoroid meteor shower puts on a show
Yes, the peak of the annual persei meteor shower is almost here here now to give us an astronomy lesson and how to see the shower is derek demeter planetarium director at seminole state college nice to see you here in the studio instead of on zoom, like the Last time we chatted first of all, tell us what what is the perseid meter shower, so the percy meteor shower is uh. Basically, essentially, we are orbiting through a debris field of a comet called swift tuttle. So around this time of year, we get bombarded by all these pieces of ice and and dust that hit our atmosphere and produce this beautiful display of meteors, which we call the perseid meteor shower, and the name itself actually comes from the constellation perseus which, which is Where, essentially, the meteors appear to be coming from, we call it the radiant point. So when you look up in the sky, youll see meteor streaking across the sky. All from that part of the area which we call perseid and hence the name. What makes uh the perseid media shower, meteor shower, so special derrick, so whats really famous about the percy meteor shower. Is we get a higher chance of these things? Called fireballs and a fireball essentially is a much much brighter meteor. That can even be seen in really light polluted places like orlando. So if youre here in the city, you might see this huge, just greenish glow shoot across the sky and the perseids tend to have a higher chance of of seeing these these fireballs.
So it makes it quite a spectacle, yeah, okay, so the big question is whens the best time to see it. Where should we be looking to see it so kind of give us that that breakdown? So really you you need clear skies and thankfully, right now you know according to uh, you know being in florida. Usually it starts to clear up really nice later in the early morning, usually when these meteor showers are really kind of at their peak. So, unfortunately, it is a early morning. Viewing so anytime after midnight is a really good chance. However anytime its dark outside, you might see a meteor in the sky. So really you just need to have a clear sky. You need to go outside at night and look up, and this is a great way to kind of just relax, maybe get a lawn chair and just pull it back and look up and theyll be shooting around all over the sky. So but of course, youll have a higher chance of seeing them. If you look towards the north east after midnight, thats kind of where perseus will be in the sky, have we seen the peak yet or when is the peak, so the peak actually begins tomorrow night and into uh into thursday, so so wednesday and thursday will be The highest chance of seeing meteors, but it actually goes on through this whole week, so you know, look up. If you see a meteor, it could very possibly be a persei now theres also sporadics, which means that their meteors are just coming through our atmosphere.
All the time, so it might not always be a perseid, but your chances are going to be much higher during a meteor shower, seeing one whats one of those fun facts. You know when you think about the time and space of us seeing this versus. You know where its happening in space well its just its just a reminder that things are in motion right. So you have this: comet thats orbiting around the sun were orbiting around the sun, and you know this comet is very very far away millions and millions and millions of miles away and that dust thats coming off this comet is finally hitting us, so were actually seeing Space dust, thats burning up in our atmosphere and just kind of gives you a sense of connection, but the other thing i love too, is that during the percy meteor shower, especially if you get to a dark sky, you can actually see the milky way, which is This big band of light that contains this near the center of our own galaxy then were reminded when we look up in the night sky. Just how connected we are to our cosmos and uh. We get a chance to see that so thats, one of my favorite things about it. It makes you feel, really tiny, yeah and were talking about you know being connected, and the planetarium of course has been closed for for a little while whats whats next for the planetarium.
So right now we are still figuring out all the logistics but were hoping to reopen in october were going to be doing. Some limited public shows were going to be doing some outdoor events where people can spread out but still enjoy the night sky and look through our telescopes. So we are excited to bring people back to the planetarium, to get them to look back up at the night sky and enjoy our cosmos all right. Thank you so much derek for joining us today and were excited to get back to the planetarium as well. Yeah. Im loving your shirt by the way, very, very in theme i have to say: well, hey you got to look stellar. Does it glow in the dark? Does it glow in the dark? No, it doesnt, no, it doesnt. No, that would be really cool.