Supermoons and Shooting Stars
Over the next few days a Supermoon will light our night skies, and compete for heavenly glory with the ‘Perseids’ meteor shower – an annual event capable of lighting up skies with up to 100 meteors per hour.
With weather conditions ideal in Sitges tonight (Sunday) and as the shower reaches its peak on Tuesday, late night skywatchers have a great opportunity to see one of the most impressive light shows ever.
What’s Going On?
A supermoon occurs when the Earth and Moon pass at their closest, making the full moon 14% bigger and 30% brighter that the rest of the year.
While this means that conditions for meteor spotting are not ideal, the Perseids Meteor shower is known as the ‘fireball champion’ and so many of the brighter meteors may be visible to the north in the darker areas of the sky.
Take some time tonight to behold the Heavenly Glory!
To get the best chances of seeing the meteor shower, here’s some advice from the Society for Popular Astronomy:
‘..minimise the effect of the moonlight by observing with your back to the Moon – possibly viewing the Cassiopeia/Cepheus/Ursa Minor area. If possible, keep the Moon hidden behind trees or a nearby building.’
For a map of the sky please check this link from the Society of Popular Astronomy
Am I at Risk? Is there any chance of a cataclysm as foretold in the Hollywood Blockbuster ‘Armageddon’?
While there may be a risk of being bitten by mosquitos, That’s all there is to worry about.
There is virtually no risk from actual meteor impact (and anyway if you were unlucky, hiding indoors offers very little protection)
The risk of sunburn is however absolute zero – which will be welcome news to many of you out there…