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Mid-Atlantic to Central US: Clear Skies for Peak of Aquarids Meteor Shower

By Kevin Byrne, AccuWeather.com Staff Writer
July 30, 2014; 12:08 AM ET
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With the help of a new moon, stargazers are in for a treat as the peak of the Delta Aquarids meteor shower unfolds in the predawn hours Tuesday, July 29.

Due to the new moon, the night sky will be darker and allow for the meteors to shine brighter according to EarthSky.org. Unlike other types of meteors such as the Perseids, which occur in August, the Aquarids tend be fainter so the darker sky will be a benefit, EarthSky says.

Weather will affect viewing conditions for several regions of the country, including New England, parts of the Southeastern U.S. and western parts of the country, from the Four Corners region, northward along the Rockies and into parts of the Northwest.

AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Andy Mussoline said rain and clouds will persist overnight throughout New England even after severe storms conclude.

Mussoline said a cold front across the Southeast will bring showers and thunderstorms associated with the front in the early hours of the evening, but lingering clouds will remain in the overnight hours.

In the interior west, Mussoline said monsoonal moisture is leading to numerous showers and thunderstorms, across the region.

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EarthSky states that at the peak of the Aquarids, viewers can expect to see 15-20 meteors per hours and the best time to view the shower for any time zone will be 3 a.m.

Stargazers will want to face south to get the best views of the aquarids, which will start becoming visible shortly after midnight. While most of the world will be able to see the Aquarids, the best viewing will be in the Southern Hemisphere and Northern Hemisphere tropics, according to NASA.

As is the case for all meteor showers, it's best to find an open, clear space away from the lights of major metropolitan areas. In addition, viewers should allow 10-15 minutes outside in the dark for their eyes to adjust before having an optimal viewing experience.

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