A trio of meteor showers will peak this week – what you need to know

Where to see the meteor showers

Excitingly, the showers coincide with a new moon on July 29, which means the sky will be quite dark. Here is everything you need to know.

The Pisces Austrinids – July 28

Speaking to The Guardian, Prof Orsola De Marco from Macquarie University says, the Piscis Austrinids will have quite a low shower rate.

“If you’re on the east coast of Australia, the Piscis Austrinids will rise around 8pm to the south-east, traveling closer to due east by 11pm.”

“Look towards the east, about 45 degrees up – about halfway between the horizon and above your head.”

The Southern Delta Aquariids – July 30

The Southern Delta Aquariids will peak on 30 July, and will have the most meteors (up to 20 an hour).

“The Southern Delta Aquariids will be visible around 11pm, to the east-northeast and 45 degrees upwards from the horizon,” Prof Orsola says.


Alpha Capricornids – July 30

Similar to the Southern Delta Aquariids, the Alpha Capricornids will peak on 30 July. Although it will have a low shower rate, it will be very bright.

The Alpha Capricornids are “relatively bright and will have some fireballs,” Prof. Orsola says.

Catch a glimpse of the Alpha Capricornids at “about 11pm on 30 July to the north-northeast, about 65 degrees up from the horizon.”

What causes a meteor shower?

As comets orbit around the solar system, they shed particles. The National Geographic explains these “particles appear as a dusty trail behind the ‘dirty snowball’ of rock, ice, and gas that makes up the comet’s nucleus.”

“As the Earth passes through a comet’s tail, the rocky debris collides with our atmosphere, creating the colorful streaks of a meteor shower.”

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