Rest of Summer Full of Asteroids, Shooting Stars
By By Samantha Kramer, AccuWeather.com Staff Writer
August 01, 2012, 12:58:52 PM EDT
Get ready, stargazers. The summer's night sky is getting active.
It kicked off last weekend with an asteroid almost a half-mile long — about the size of a city block — flying by Earth. The asteroid 2002 AM31 came within 3.2 million miles of our planet on Sunday.
Another asteroid, named 2012 OQ, is expected to zip by tonight, and will be five times closer than last weekend's asteroid, Outten said. Because it is much smaller, about 200 m or the size of four Olympic-sized swimming pools, viewers will need a telescope for the asteroid.
Outten said asteroids frequently enter our solar system and can be monitored by scientists, but the proximity of the two passing by this week is not as common.
"This next pair are probably the closest ones in a while," he said.
This weekend, July 28 and 29, should also be added to the calendar, as the annual Southern Delta Aquarids meteor showers will come into their peak view.
Each year in August, Earth passes into the debris trail left behind by comets. Some of the debris is up to 1,000 years old.
"They are an annual thing because every time this year, the Earth's orbit is in the same place," said AccuWeather Meteorologist Mark Paquette. "[These meteors] are the debris from the Marsden and Kracht sun-grazing comets, and that is what we see as shooting stars."
Paquette said the Southern Hemisphere will have a better view of the Aquarids, but the annual Perseids shower on August 12 is another opportunity for Northern Hemisphere viewers. The Perseids, which are debris from the Swift-Tuttle comet, can produce 60 shooting stars per hour, he said.
Unfortunately, the Aquarids will be during a full moon, so the annual shooting stars won't be seen as well as they have in past years, Paquette said.
Comments that don't add to the conversation may be automatically or manually removed by Facebook or AccuWeather. Profanity, personal attacks, and spam will not be tolerated.
More Weather News
Weather News - February 23, 2019, 12:59:59 PM EST
While a severe weather outbreak, including the threat of tornadoes, is taking shape across the southern United States, flooding has prompted rescues across the Tennessee Valley on Saturday.
Weather News - February 23, 2019, 10:44:13 AM EST
While the weekend is expected to end with rain in Portland, Oregon, the stage is set for a snowstorm to start the new week and disrupt travelers and residents.
Weather News - February 23, 2019, 10:22:38 AM EST
After a dry weekend, a new storm is expected to return downpours and thunderstorms to northern India to close out February.
Weather News - February 23, 2019, 11:05:42 AM EST
Wutip, the strongest ever super typhoon to churn in the western Pacific Ocean during February, is lashing Guam with flooding rain, strong winds and pounding seas.
Weather News - February 23, 2019, 9:37:45 AM EST
Pounding seas will continue to spread along the eastern coast of Australia through the end of the weekend
Weather News - February 23, 2019, 12:01:18 PM EST
People across the Ohio, Tennessee and middle and lower Mississippi valleys are being put on alert for fast-moving severe thunderstorms that can contain dangerous tornadoes into Saturday night.
Weather News - February 22, 2019, 3:12:49 PM EST
Ice swimming in Russia has long been associated with older, usually Speedo-clad men. However, a younger generation of Moscow’s “Walruses of the Capital” club are giving it a fashionable new image.
In case you missed it: Colossal winter storm turns deadly in eastern US; Rare snow makes another appearance in Las Vegas
Weather News - February 22, 2019, 12:17:48 PM EST
A monster winter storm swept across the Midwest and eastern United States this week, leading to fatal accidents on snowy roads while more snow hit Las Vegas in rare form.