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Perseid Meteor Shower UPSC NOTE

 


Perseid Meteor Shower

  • The Perseids are a prolific meteor shower associated with the comet Swift–Tuttle. 

  • The Perseid meteors are rocky debris left behind by the Swift-Tuttle comet, dragged towards earth when the planet’s orbit crosses the comet’s path.

  • The meteors are called the Perseids because they appear from the general direction of the constellation Perseus and in more modern times have a radiant bordering on Cassiopeia and Camelopardalis.

  • The stream of debris is called the Perseid cloud and stretches along the orbit of the comet Swift–Tuttle. 

  • The cloud consists of particles ejected by the comet as it travels on its 133-year orbit.

  • Most of the particles have been part of the cloud for around a thousand years. 

  • However, there is also a relatively young filament of dust in the stream that was pulled off the comet in 1865, which can give an early mini-peak the day before the maximum shower.

  • The dimensions of the cloud in the vicinity of the Earth are estimated to be approximately 0.1 astronomical units (AU) across and 0.8 AU along the Earth's orbit, spread out by annual interactions with the Earth's gravity.

  • The shower is visible from mid-July each year, with the peak in activity between 9 and 14 August, depending on the particular location of the stream. 

  • During the peak, the rate of meteors reaches 60 or more per hour. 

  • They can be seen all across the sky; however, because of the shower's radiant in the constellation of Perseus, the Perseids are primarily visible in the Northern Hemisphere.

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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Perseid Meteor Shower UPSC NOTE
Perseid Meteor Shower UPSC NOTE
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