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Perseids Meteor Shower

Will the skies clear?


09/08/2017

Overview

The Perseids meteor shower is visible each year with the peak occurring between August 12th and 13th. This year up to 80 meteors per hour could be visible as the Earth travels through the debris of Comet Swift Tuttle. Unfortunately a three quarters full moon lighting up the sky means viewing conditions won't be ideal even if the clouds remain at bay.

Perseid meteor

Perseid meteor - 13 Aug. 2013" by Kim MyoungSung - meteo (missed focus). Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Cloud forecasts

The latest cloud casts are painting a reasonably promising picture. The Arpege 00z computer model run from Wednesday 9th August shows clear skies early on Saturday night but later on cloudier conditions push in from the west. Nonetheless southern and eastern regions remain mostly clear.

Arpege 00z forecast cloud cover for 00:00GMT

Arpege cloudcast 1

 

Arpege 00z forecast cloud cover for 03:00GMT

Arpege cloudcast 2
To see the latest charts use these resources:

Arpege hourly cloud forecast charts

Astronomy weather forecasts



You can also check cloud forecast charts from the Global Forecast System (GFS) model.

GFS cloud forecast charts

Summary

The prospects for viewing the Perseids look reasonable at the time of publication. This morning's Arpege computer model run shows clear spells in all areas during the early part of Saturday night, but cloud pushes across northern and western areas later on. At this range there is uncertainty about the forecast details and the latest run of the lower resolution GFS06z model shows the clear skies lasting longer.

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