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Sunday, August 08, 2021

The Canary Islands observatories will broadcast the Perseid rain live

Teide and the Milky Way

The sky-live.tv channel will broadcast the Perseids from the observatories of the Canary Islands on the night of August 12 to 13, when the activity of this meteor shower is estimated to reach 100 meteors per hour.

Although the first records of the Perseids date from the year 36, it was not until 1835 that the Belgian astronomer Adolphe Quetelet identified the radiant of this meteor shower (the point in the sky where they appear to be born) in the constellation Perseus, from the that are named after them. The Perseids, also known as 'Tears of Saint Lawrence', is a meteor shower originating in the cloud of dust and rocks that Comet Swift-Tuttle has left behind in each of its orbits around the Sun.

Every year around this time the Earth traverses the comet's trail and, when the small particles that came off it brush against the Earth's atmosphere, the luminous traces that we know as 'shooting stars' are produced. This year the activity of the Perseids occurs between July 17 and August 24. The maximum is expected at dawn from August 12 to 13. Those nights and those of the next few days, between August 11 and 14, will be the best to enjoy this meteor shower.

In addition, the low luminosity of the Moon - there will be a new Moon on August 8 - will facilitate the possibility of seeing even the weakest meteors. According to the calculations of the standard models, the activity of the Perseids will be around 100 meteors / hour (ZHR or zenith hourly rates).


For the Perseids of 2021, the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) and the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) have come together under the citizen science project 'Contadores de Estrellas' (Star Counters).