The Perseids meteor shower peaks around August 12th-13th. In New York, the best viewing time is around 04:00 EDT (08:00 GMT). You could see as many as 100 meteors per hour. The moon will be close to its new moon phase, providing dark skies.

The Perseids meteor shower is a spectacular celestial event that occurs every year around mid-August. In 2024, the peak of this meteor shower is expected to occur around August 12th-13th. During this time, stargazers in New York can expect an impressive display in the night sky.

The best time to view the Perseids is in the pre-dawn hours, specifically around 04:00 Eastern Daylight Time (08:00 Greenwich Mean Time). This is when the shower’s radiant point, located in the constellation Perseus, is highest in the sky. The radiant point is the area in the sky where the meteors appear to originate from.

Under ideal conditions, which include clear skies and minimal light pollution, observers may witness up to 100 meteors per hour during the peak. Each meteor is a tiny piece of the comet Swift-Tuttle burning up as it streaks through Earth’s atmosphere at high speed.

To get the best viewing experience, it’s recommended to find a viewing location far away from city lights. Light pollution can significantly reduce the number of meteors you can see. A dark, open sky is key to catching sight of as many meteors as possible.

Once you’ve found your viewing spot, simply lie back and look halfway up the northeastern sky. There’s no need for telescopes or binoculars, as they can limit your field of view. The Perseids are typically bright enough to see with the naked eye.

Remember, patience is key when watching a meteor shower. It can take up to 30 minutes for your eyes to adjust to the dark, and the shower will last several hours. So get comfortable, and with a bit of luck, you’ll be treated to a memorable astronomical display.

Happy stargazing! 😊

52 Days

Days until Perseids peak
The peak of a meteor shower is when the most shooting stars are visible in the sky.

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When to Watch 

Pereids peak date

Morning of January 4

Observation window

9:00pm to 4:30am

Estimated rate

15-30 per hour

While expected rates in your location may be high, several factors may interfere.

Moon Phase at Peak

Waxing Gibbous

Moon Illumination50%
50%
The Moon’s phases refer to the changing appearance of the Moon as seen from Earth.

The Moon phase is not ideal for gazing at the Perseids meteor shower. The peak of this shower coincides just a day after the Full Moon, so observers may only see the brightest Perseids meteors.

Local Darksites

DARKSITE

Harriman State Park

Melville, New York
DARKSITE

Harriman State Park

Melville, New York
DARKSITE

Harriman State Park

Melville, New York
DARKSITE

Harriman State Park

Melville, New York

Viewing Guides

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Meet Perseus, the Hero

Every meteor shower has a central point in the sky, known as the radiant. This is the spot where the meteors seem to originate. For the Perseids meteor shower, the radiant is located near the constellation of Perseus. Since a constellation is simply a pattern of stars, finding Perseus in the night sky will give you a better chance to see the Perseids meteor shower in all its glory.

What is the Perseids Meteor Shower?

The Perseids meteor shower, a highlight of the summer night sky, is one of the most anticipated celestial events of the year. Comparable to the vibrant August Perseids and the December Geminids, this annual shower boasts one of the highest predicted hourly rates among major meteor showers. The 2024 Perseids will be active from mid-July to late August, with its peak occurring on the night of August 12th through the early hours of August 13th. The peak of a meteor shower is the moment of maximum activity, offering the best chance to observe the most meteors.

A notable feature of the Perseids is their capacity to produce bright meteors, commonly known as fireballs, which can create long-lasting trails across the sky. Although the moon will be half-illuminated, it will set around midnight, providing dark skies for optimal viewing conditions.

The Perseids are best viewed from the northern hemisphere, where the constellation Perseus, from which the meteors appear to radiate, is prominently visible. This makes it an excellent event for observers in North America, Europe, and most of Asia. Conversely, viewers in the southern hemisphere, particularly in Australia and the lower regions of South America, may find it challenging to witness the shower. While higher latitudes offer better viewing opportunities, it’s important to consider potential cloud cover, which can obscure visibility during the peak season.

The Perseids meteor shower in 2024

This year, the First Quarter Moon (50% full) will accompany the peak of the Perseids meteor shower. This is a notable improvement compared to the Perseids of 2023, which coincided with a brighter Waxing Gibbous Moon. Although the moonlight may slightly diminish the visibility of the fainter meteors, the moon is set to retire for the night around midnight, providing darker skies for those eager to observe the celestial spectacle. The 2024 Perseids, peaking on the night of August 12th, promise a fine display for those willing to brave the summer night.

The radiant of the Perseids meteor shower is the point in the sky from where the meteors seem to emerge. It is located within the constellation Perseus, which is visible during the shower’s peak in August. Unlike other major showers named after extinct constellations, the Perseids are named after a still-existing constellation. The constellation Perseus is situated between the constellations Cassiopeia and Taurus, making it relatively easy to locate in the night sky. To find the radiant, it’s best to locate the constellation Cassiopeia and look nearby for the famed ‘shooting stars’ of the Perseids.

How do I know the sky is dark enough to see meteors?

To ensure the sky is dark enough to see the Perseids meteors, it’s best to move away from city lights. Find a secluded, dark location like a state or city park. Once there, face northeast to keep the Perseids’ radiant in view. If the Little Dipper’s stars are visible, your site is likely dark enough. For the Perseids, looking slightly toward the horizon rather than straight up may increase your chances of seeing more meteors. Remember, patience is key, and your efforts will be rewarded with a celestial show.

Quadrantids gazing conditions may not be ideal. The Moon may obstruct all but the brightest meteors.

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Waxing Gibbous

The Quadrantids meteor shower is best viewed in the Northern Hemisphere.

Technical Perseids Facts

Perseids

The shower is named after the constellation Perseus, as the meteors appear to radiate from this point in the sky

The Perseids are one of the most plentiful showers with about 50 to 100 meteors seen per hour.

The pieces of space debris that interact with our atmosphere to create the Perseids originate from comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle1.

The radiant – the point in the sky from which the Perseids appear to come – is the constellation Perseus.

Perseid meteoroids enter Earth’s atmosphere (and are then called meteors) at roughly 133,200 mph (60 kilometers per second) relative to the planet

The Perseids frequently leave long “wakes” of light and color behind them as they streak through Earth’s atmosphere.

The Perseids typically start around mid-July

The Perseids typically last through late-August.

The peak of the Perseids meteor shower typically occurs around August 12th every year

Meteor Shower Calendar

Explore our comprehensive list of meteor showers for 2024. Click on each event for detailed information about peak dates, moon phases, and expected meteor rates. Don’t miss out on these celestial highlights!

Quadrantids
Peak: January 3-4
40 meteors per hour
Moon: Waning crescent
Illumination50%
50%
Lyrids
Peak: April 21-22
10-20 meteors per hour
Moon: Waxing gibbous
Illumination98%
98%
Eta Aquariids
Peak: May 5-6
10 meteors per hour
Moon: Waning crescent
Illumination3%
3%
Northern Taurids
Peak: May 29-30
5 meteors per hour
Moon: Last quarter
Illumination50%
50%
Boötids
Peak: June 26-27
100 meteors per hour
Moon: Waning gibbous
Illumination64%
64%
Southern Delta Aquariids
Peak: July 27-29
25 meteors per hour
Moon: Waning crescent
Illumination44%
44%
Kappa Cygnids
Peak: August 16-20
20 meteors per hour
Moon: Waxing gibbous
Illumination98%
98%
Draconids
Peak: October 8-9
10 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Illumination50%
50%
Orionids
Peak: October 21-22
20 meteors per hour
Moon: Waning gibbous
Illumination67%
67%
Geminids
Peak: December 13-14
150 meteors per hour
Moon: Waxing gibbous
Illumination98%
98%
Ursids
Peak: December 21-22
10 meteors per hour
Moon: Last quarter
Illumination50%
50%

Meteor Shower Calendar

Explore our comprehensive list of meteor showers for 2024. Click on each event for detailed information about peak dates, moon phases, and expected meteor rates. Don’t miss out on these celestial highlights!

Quadrantids
Peak: January 3-4
120 meteors per hour
Moon: Waning crescent
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Lyrids
Peak: April 21-22
10 to 15 meteors per hour
Moon: Waning crescent
Moon Illumination97%
97%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%
Eta Aquarids
Peak: May 5-6
40 meteors per hour
Moon: New moon
Moon Illumination50%
50%

Perseids Skymap

Embark on a celestial journey with the Spacedex Skymap navigator, your visual gateway to the stars. Experience the Perseids meteor shower like never before, tracing the paths of meteors across the tapestry of the night sky.

Glossary

Navigate through the terms used on the page, enhancing your knowledge and enjoyment of space observation.

Front Side

A constellation is a group of stars that forms a pattern in the sky. People long ago thought these patterns looked like animals, objects, or people.
Constellation

Front Side

A meteor is a space rock—or meteoroid—that enters Earth’s atmosphere. As the space rock falls toward Earth, it burns due to resistance.” When Earth encounters many meteoroids at once, we call it a meteor shower.
Meteor

Front Side

A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Constellation

Front Side

A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Zenthial Hourly Rate

Front Side

A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Radiant

Front Side

A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Peak
A constellation is a group of stars that forms a pattern in the sky. People long ago thought these patterns looked like animals, objects, or people.
Constellation
A meteor is a space rock—or meteoroid—that enters Earth’s atmosphere. As the space rock falls toward Earth, it burns due to resistance.” When Earth encounters many meteoroids at once, we call it a meteor shower.
Meteor
A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Constellation
A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Zenthial Hourly Rate
A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Radiant
A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Peak
A constellation is a group of stars that forms a pattern in the sky. People long ago thought these patterns looked like animals, objects, or people.
Constellation
A meteor is a space rock—or meteoroid—that enters Earth’s atmosphere. As the space rock falls toward Earth, it burns due to resistance.” When Earth encounters many meteoroids at once, we call it a meteor shower.
Meteor
A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Constellation
A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Zenthial Hourly Rate
A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Radiant
A constellation is a group of stars that form a particular pattern in the sky. Most of the constellations we know have been given names, for example Orion the Hunter and the Great Bear.
Peak

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