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12th Aug 2021

There’s a meteor shower happening tonight – here’s all you need to know

Fiona Frawley

Insert lyrics about skies full of stars, shooting stars and whatever you’re having yourself here.

If you cast your eyes to the sky tonight, you might catch a glimpse of something very special. The Perseid meteor shower occurs every August, but Astronomy Ireland have advised that tonight (12th) is the best night for Irish stargazers to see a bit of the action.

The Perseid meteor shower occurs when “…Earth passes through a cloud of dust left behind by the comet Swift-Tuttle…“, resulting in tiny particles leaving the comet and creating shooting star-type trails. These trails can be seen from the ground without the use of binoculars or a telescope.

While you don’t need any extra equipment to see the Perseid shower, a cloud-free sky does come in handy. Never a guarantee on this island but according to Met Éireann tonight’s sky should be relatively clear, although scattered showers and windy conditions are forecast for the west and north. But what’s a bit of wind and rain between friends? Particularly Irish friends, we’re well used to it. Astronomy Ireland also say this year in particular offers a good chance to see the Perseid meteors as there isn’t a moon, which would usually make viewing difficult. So no better time to layer up, fill your flask with something warming, fold out the camping chair and look up for a bit of magic.

Header image via IMDB

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