LAWTON, Okla._Grab your camera and chair, the annual August Perseid meteor shower is this week and the best viewing is supposed to be early Thursday morning.
Most of the U.S. will have clear skies overnight and the peak viewing time for our area is between 1:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. Thursday. There will also be a lack of moonlight, so that won't interfere with your meteor show. NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke says you can expect one shooting star per minute, maybe more.
"This year's Perseid meteor shower peaks on August 12 and 13. The moon will be nearly new, setting the stage for a great display," Cooke said in a NASA news release.
The Perseid meteor shower is the result of Earth passing through debris from the Comet Swift-Tuttle. NASA explains the comet's orbit passes through the inner solar system every 133 years. The debris field is so large, it takes Earth roughly one week to pass through.
"Meteors from Comet Swift-Tuttle are called Perseids because they seem to fly out of the constellation Perseus. This arrangement of stars, which represents an ancient hero from Greek mythology, rises in the NE around 10 pm local time. As Perseus rises and the night deepens, meteor rates will increase," NASA explained.
If you plan on photographing the meteor shower, it's suggested that you use a wide-angle lens, a sturdy tripod, a wide aperture, a long exposure and the proper ISO for how you want the photo to turn out. Being away from cities and other forms of light pollution is also important.