There’s a unique opportunity to watch what may look like shooting stars putting on a show this weekend.
The annual Perseid meteor shower happens when the Earth sweeps through dust that’s left behind by a comet swift-tunnel, according to University of Manitoba instructor Danielle Pahud.
“Comets are dusty snowballs and when they come close to the sun they leave behind a trails of dust, and every year Earth’s orbit has it sweeping through this dust trail,” Pahud said.
“What we’re seeing when we see meteors are little dust particles lighting up the atmosphere.”
In Manitoba, the best time to see the meteors is at around 2 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday, Pahud said, adding any time around midnight will be good for viewing.
“It’s going to be great here in Manitoba because the moon is rising very early in the morning.”
“We’re expecting 50 to 70 meteors per hour this weekend,” Pahud said.
She recommends anywhere it’s dark, outside the city, for the best views.
To learn more about the wonders of the night sky, people can attend monthly open houses at the Ewen Campus Observatory and the Lockhart Planetarium in University College at the Fort Garry Campus of the University of Manitoba.
The events last two hours and happen on the last Wednesday of the month starting at sunset.
WATCH: Time-lapse video captures Perseid’s peak
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