A METEOR shower considered by experts to be the biggest and best of the year will be visible over Ireland next week.
The Perseids are one of the best and brightest batches of shooting stars visible from Earth.
An annual occurrence, the shower comes around as the planet drifts through a debris cloud left behind by the giant comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle.
Dust, pebbles and cosmic detritus slam through the Earth’s atmosphere, burning up and transforming into brief, bright streaks and even a spectacular full-blown fireball visible across the night sky.
The shower is set to be visible over Ireland this coming Tuesday, August 11 and Wednesday August 12, with astronomers optimistic about the prospects of a cool, clear, night.
Those conditions could maximise visibility, making it a week to remember for stargazers.
Speaking to The Journal, the editor of Astronomy Ireland magazine David Moore said “a few clouds won’t spoil the view, especially as you have all the hours of darkness to see them and this shower is known for producing some brilliant fireballs”.
“I remember seeing one that light up the whole countryside like daylight for a few seconds,” he added.
Those watching on across Ireland are being urged to count how many meteors they spot in the night’s sky every 15 minutes on those two nights.
Doing so will better help scientists understand how meteor showers develop.
One of the most beautiful spectacles in nature, with many people across Ireland stuck indoors, this could be the perfect opportunity for a spot of stargazing.