Los Angeles

The 2018 Perseid Meteor Shower Is Coming Sunday Night

What to Know

  • The yearly Perseid meteors are back, and the spectacular-looking shower will peak between Aug. 11 and Aug. 13.
  • The shower can be seen from SoCal overnight on Aug. 11-12 and 12-13, but only away from urban areas and their city lights.
  • No special equipment is required to watch the shower--just get away from the city, stay up late, lean back and enjoy.

The annual Perseid meteor shower, which can provide dazzling nighttime views for those who can see it, will peak from Sunday to Tuesday.

Unfortunately, Southern Californians will miss the shower at its maximum strength, which Griffith Observatory says will take place between 6:15 a.m. and 6:45 p.m. on Monday, but can still see the display between dusk Sunday and Monday and dawn Monday and Tuesday if they are in the right place.

The best time of night to see the showers is around 2 a.m., when stargazers can turn towards the Perseus constellations which gives the shower its name, per Space.com.

Griffith reccomends on its website to get at least 50 miles away from brightly lit urban areas in and around Los Angeles and find a safe place to park and lean back to watch the shower in the night sky. Space.com suggests the Santa Monica Mountains or the Angeles National Forest as possible spots to escape to.

The shower is a yearly occurrence that takes place when Earth's orbit intersects with the path of the Comet Swift-Tuttle, which passes Earth every 133 years on its way around the sun. Some of the debris in the comet's path gets burned up in Earth's atmosphere, causing the eye-popping showers. 

NASA scientists expect the shower to be especially visible this year because the moon will be a thin, barely visible crescent, limiting the amount of light in the night sky.

No special equipment is needed to see the Perseids -- only what will make you comfortable while looking up.

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