August | Meteors
Welcome to the first month of Know Your Night Sky.  This month we are focusing on meteors We are getting ready for the Perseid meteor shower. The Perseid meteor shower is the brightest of the meteor shower of the year. For best viewing, look to the sky on August 11 and 12 between 10:30 p.m. and 4:30 a.m. The meteor shower will start slow, but should gain steam after midnight.
Check back regularly for more details and resources on the meteor shower and meteors in general.



Fun facts about Meteors

  • Scientists use meteors to study the origins of the solar system.
  • A meteor shower occurs when the Earth passes through the trail of debris left by a comet or asteroid. The Perseid meteor shower is caused by the debris field of the Swift- Tuttle comet.   
  • Meteors can travel up to 160,000 miles per hour when they enter Earth's atmosphere
  • The Earth’s atmosphere experiences millions of meteors every day. A meteoroid is a small rock or particle of debris in our solar system. They range in size from dust to around 33 feet in diameter.
  • Around 500 meteorites reach the Earth’s surface every year but of those only around 5 ever make it to scientists for study.
  • In 1833, during the Leonid meteor shower, a meteor storm occurred. 10,000 meteor's per hour were reported. 10-15 meteors were sighted per second. 
  • When a meteoroid enters the atmosphere it creates a meteor, and whats left of the meteor, if anything, falls to the earth and is called a meteorite.
  • Meteors are sometimes observed with red, yellow or green trails. The colors are caused by the ionization of molecules - like oxygen which appears to be green.  
More meteor facts 

1 comment:

  1. Great site! Thanks NASA, I'll be following & Learning about our night sky with you.
    What a good use of the internet!!