Search icon


10th Aug 2021

A meteor shower will light up the skies this Thursday

Ellen Fitzpatrick

This is so cool.

We’re in for a real treat this week as a meteor shower is set to light up the skies this coming Thursday.

As Earth passes through debris left after a comet, it is predicted to be the peak of the Perseid meteor shower.

We’ll be able to see this stunning moment on Thursday night and into early Friday when the sky is at its darkest.

And we’re in luck because these meteors will be best viewed from the Northern Hemisphere, and ideally with no clouds to block the view, according to the UK’s Royal Astronomical Society.

The forecast for Ireland currently says we’ll have some patchy clouds and clear spells on the south and east of the country on Thursday night, with some showers in the west and north.

This meteor shower is thought to be one of the best every year as it’s so bright and active.

This meteor shower occurs when Earth passes through a cloud of debris, with more comets seen entering the atmosphere.

This particular comet is associated with Comet 109/P Swift-Tuttle, which was last seen on earth in 1992.

Due to the heat of the earth, the air around the meteor glows and lights up, which is where we see the flames emerging from it.

The best place to view these comets is away from anywhere light-polluted, so cities and big towns are not as good as more isolated spots.

Dr Robert Massey, deputy executive director of the Royal Astronomical Society, said: “The light of the moon won’t interfere with the shower, so you stand a much better chance of seeing more meteors.

“If there is a full moon in the sky, then you might as well be in the city because it will light up the whole sky, but this year the moon really will help us see more Perseid meteors.”

Anyone who wants to get a glimpse at this has been advised to check the weather well in advance to avoid disappointment.