Public Event: Perseids Meteor Shower

The Astronomical Society of Malta is organising an event dedicated to one of the more famous annual meteor showers, the Perseids.

While the peak of the Perseids itself is actually next week, unfortunately on the day we will have a very bright moon, thus we are setting up a week before.

It is worth noting that the current meteor shower peak hourly rate of 20 meteors per hour will only be approached later on in the night when the meteor shower radiant (the location in the sky where the meteors appear to originate) in the constellation Perseus approaches zenith – i.e., directly overhead, at 90 degrees altitude. This is why, earlier on in the night, much less meteors than the maximum hourly rate will be observed. This is why we are not starting the event before 10pm, and we suggest that those coming stay on as late as possible, as the meteor rate will improve later on.

Notwithsanding this, some Perseids shall still be observed, particularly later on in the night (after 2am), and we will in any case be observing a number of other interesting deep sky objects as well as the planets Jupiter and Saturn – so see you all there!

We shall be having a couple of telescopes set up for the night as the Milky Way is currently at a good elevation to spot at the time of the event. We shall also pry inside the Milky Way to view directly the four major nebulae located deep inside it.

As mentioned above, the event will start a bit late, and it is therefore recommended that you get sleeping mats or chairs along and make yourselves comfortable. Don’t forget insect repellent and water to keep yourselves hydrated, but please make sure that you leave no rubbish behind you. Let’s keep our countryside clean!

The location is next to the Tal-Hamrija Coastal Tower, which is past Hagar Qim Temple, walking along the pedestrian street between the temples and taking a left about 2/3 the way down the road. Make sure to come with comfortable shoes and with some small lights – ideally, red lights if possible in order to avoid disrupting dark adaptation for our eyes and the flora and fauna in the area. A map to the location is be provided in the comments section.

Event start time: Saturday, August 3, 2019 at 7:00 PM