Perseid meteor shower to peak over Canada this weekend

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Perseid meteors tend to strengthen in number as late night deepens into midnight, and typically produce the most meteors in the wee hours before dawn.

According to NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke, the shower should feature 60 to 70 meteors per hour at its peak. But, keep your head up and eye to the sky, you might catch a glimpse of a few shooting stars in the days leading up to or days following the peak.

The Perseids are set to peak late Sunday, August 12 into the early morning of Monday, August 13, but the spectacle is already beginning to heat up in the dark, mostly moonless evenings.

The Perseids happen each year as Earth passes through the trail of dust left behind by the comet Swift-Tuttle, which makes a full orbit of the sun every 133 years.

Every between mid-July and the last week of August the Earth approaches the comet's orbital path.

On the odd occasion, however, the shower has been known to exceed all expectations during the peak.

Even better news still, the moon won't be spoiling the view.

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If you'd rather watch the Perseid meteor shower from the comfort of your own home, the Virtual Telescope Project is live broadcasting the shower from scenic Castel Santa Maria, Italy, beginning at 4:30 p.m. EST on August 12.

Active Junky, which is also the sister site of Space.com, has provided a list of the nation's top cities, and the best places they can go to watch the meteor show.

Where do the Perseids come from?

According to Dr John Mason of the British Astronomical Association, the meteors will start to increase in activity between 10pm BST on August 12 and the predawn hours on August 13.

"Even in towns or cities observed rates may still be around 10 to 20 an hour in the early morning hours when the radiant is high".

This Perseid meteor shower will take place during a almost new moon-meaning it won't interfere with the show-and is expected to be the best meteor shower this year.

For optimal meteor-spotting chances be sure to stay away from bright lights and sources of urban pollution like street lamps, cars and buildings.

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